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Dr. W.F. Richardson Calls for Criminal Charges Against Officers Involved in Murder of Tyre Nichols

New York, NY (Tuesday, January 24, 2023) – Dr. W. Franklyn Richardson, Chairman of The Conference of National Black Churches (CNBC), today urged Memphis officials to bring criminal charges against the five officers accused of beating Tyre Nichols to death. Nichols had been pulled over after a traffic violation that escalated to violence, with the officers beating Nichols for three minutes. Nichols was hospitalized following the incident and died three days later.

“Thirty-two years after the brutal beating of Rodney King, driving while Black remains one of the greatest threats to our safety. There is no excuse for what transpired in Memphis, no justification for the fact that Tyre Nichols will not return to his four-year old son. That the officers who killed Tyre were Black is painful and appalling, and points to a deeper issue: brutality is so engrained in police departments that not even the color of officers’ skin is enough to stop the ever-present violence inflicted against Black Americans by the police.

I call upon authorities to use the full force of the criminal justice system to condemn this violence by charging all five officers. Firing them is simply not enough. Tyre’s family deserves justice and transparency. Our nation needs a single message to resound from Memphis: abhorrent crimes against Black people, at the hands of those who are there to protect and serve us, cannot and shall not be tolerated.”

About Conference of National Black Churches (CNBC)

The Conference of National Black Churches is the premiere public policy and social justice expression of the Black ecclesiastical denominations we represent in America. CNBC is comprised of the national leadership of the largest historically Black denominations in America, representing more than 80% of African American Christians across this nation that have a combined membership of over 20 million people and 30,000 congregations.


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