Video footage of Nichols’s arrest shows officers repeatedly striking him in the head
The Memphis Police Department on Friday night made public footage showing Tyre Nichols’s arrest on January 7. The city released more than one hour’s worth of video captured between four cameras, three worn by police and one attached to a street pole.
(See full video Below)
The series of videos begins with part of the initial traffic stop on a main road when one officer pulls Nichols out of the driver’s seat and at least two others join in tackling him to the ground. He appears confused as to why he’s been pulled over and can be heard at times pleading with the officers, insisting “I didn’t do anything” as they command him to lay down and put his hands behind his back. “You guys are really doing a lot right now … I’m just trying to go home,” he says. As the officers continue to yell at Nichols and work to restrain him, he repeatedly asks them to “stop.” At one point, as officers are yelling at him to lie on the ground, he replies back, “I am on the ground!”
An officer eventually pepper-sprays Nichols in the face, but he breaks free and runs away. As some of the officers give chase, one who remains behind can be heard saying, “I hope they stomp his ass. I hope they stomp his ass.”
Minutes later, officers find Nichols in a residential neighborhood where they wrestle him to the ground again, this time striking him with a baton and their feet and fists — continuing after he appears to be immobile and showing no signs of resistance. At one point during the struggle, Nichols can be heard repeatedly screaming “Mom!” According to his family’s lawyers, the that second location was less than 100 yards from his mother’s home.
Starting at about three minutes into the pole-camera footage, which has no audio, five officers have Nichols on the ground. As he appears to try to stand, they deliver numerous blows to Nichols’s head, and at least twice, an officer appears to wind up to punch him in the head, and another officer does the same with a baton. Then the officers drag Nichols, who is handcuffed and writhing on the ground, over to a police vehicle and lean him up against the side, where he repeatedly slumps over.
Two medics arrive minutes after Nichols is leaned up against the car and examine him, but appear to do nothing but watch as he continues to slump over onto his side. More than 20 minutes elapse between when officers can be heard saying they have Nichols in custody and the arrival of an ambulance.
The videos are embedded below; please be warned, the footage is graphic and disturbing.
The first video is body camera footage from an officer responding to the traffic stop of Nichols, joining other officers already on the scene.
The next three videos show what happened at the second location. The first is the pole-camera footage. The second and third are body-camera footage from other officers.