Tyre Nichols' death recalls Cleveland's own tragic history
Clevelanders gathered over the weekend to mourn Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man allegedly fatally beaten by Memphis police officers during a traffic stop this month.
Driving the news: A vigil for Nichols was held Sunday near the free stamp on Lakeside Avenue downtown with nearly 200 people attending.
- Elsewhere, the Cavaliers paid tribute to Nichols with a moment of silence during Sunday's game at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
Why it matters: Nichols' death brings to mind Cleveland's own recent history of police shootings, including the killings of Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams in 2012, and Tamir Rice in 2014.
- In 2015, the City of Cleveland and the U.S. Department of Justice entered into a consent decree agreement to reform policing.
- However, several more high-profile police-involved shootings have occurred since then, including the killings of Arthur Keith and Desmond Franklin in 2020.
Catch up fast: On Friday, the City of Memphis released footage showing police officers beating Nichols after he was pulled over during a Jan. 7 traffic stop.
- The officers have been charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression.
What they're saying: Mayor Justin Bibb called the footage "horrifying" in a statement released Friday.
- "I am heartbroken for Tyre's family. … No family should ever have to experience what they are going through right now," Bibb said. "We have been here too many times without achieving the change we so desperately need."
What's next: While there have been national calls for police reform, the newly formed Cleveland Community Police Commission to oversee police discipline held its first meeting Jan. 25.
- The 13-member committee will spend the coming months meeting with community members and officers in the city's wards and police districts to identify problems and concerns.
Of note: Anyone looking to get involved in local support efforts for Nichols can follow Black Lives Matter Cleveland's Facebook page.
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