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Kansas City area leaders speak out about killing of Tire Nichols

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Leaders and organizations in the Kansas City area are speaking out about the killing of Tire Nichols after authorities released footage of five Memphis Police Department officers beating Nichols following a traffic stop.

Missouri Representative Emanuel Cleaver II says his heart was broken by Nichols’ murder and described it as one of the “most egregious cases of police brutality” he has ever seen.

“Any law enforcement-inflicted death is a tragedy, but the murder of Mr. Nichols is particularly appalling, incredibly infuriating and something no family should ever have to endure,” Cleaver said in a written statement. of the deadly consequences that arise when some in law enforcement feel immune from accountability and above the law.”

Cleaver also notes that Congress should meet to make reforms to the judicial system “that ensure accountability, dignity and equality under the law.”

Missouri Rep. Jamie Johnson says she won’t watch the video released by authorities for her mental health and well-being.

“As comfortable as I feel about the safety of my children in our Northland community, I live my life with a lingering fear that the privileged protection I feel here doesn’t extend to the many places my children might travel in their life,” he said.

Johnson says he appreciates the swift action being taken against the offending officers but understands the nuance of the situation “cannot be underestimated.”

“Because the five officers who killed Tire Nichols were all black, they could likely face harsher penalties for being held accountable than we’ve seen historically in other cases of police brutality,” Johnson said.

Missouri Representative Marlene Terry, chair of the Missouri Legislative Black Committee, says Nichols’ death is an example of the “systemic problem with the police who too often brutalize the black community.”

Terry also says private citizens involved in a kidnapping and murder are unlikely to “receive the privilege of bail that the five former police officers received.”

“MLBC will make every effort to ensure that the scourge of police brutality is finally a relic of the past,” Terry said.

The Kansas City LGBTQ Commission honored Nichols on social media.

Rest in Power Tire Nichols.

He was a son and father who loved skateboarding. He should still be here with us tonight. pic.twitter.com/La5YNHzgt9

— Kansas City LGBTQ Commission (@LGBTQCommission) January 28, 2023

Grandview Police Chief Charles Iseman said, “as a society, we should expect and deserve accountability.”

As the department works to build positive relationships with the community, Iseman promises officials will remain committed to serving the community with “dignity and respect.”

Independence Police Chief Adam Dustman describes the footage as “appalling” and “reprehensible”.

“Tyre Nichols, like everyone else, deserved better,” Dustman said. “I am confident that justice will be served.”

Dustman says IPD will engage in deliberate dialogue as it ponders how to train and educate its members.

Police Chief Stacey Graves of the Kansas City, Missouri Police Department released a video of Nichols’ killing on Thursday, saying the KCPD will learn from the tragedy.

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