By Dorothy J. Gentry
Reaction and response ranging from outrage to sadness was swift nationwide and around the NBA after the video was released Friday showing 29-year-old Tyre Nichols being beaten by five Memphis police officers.
Players took to social media to express their frustrations and several teams, including the Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat and the Memphis Grizzlies, as well as the NBA, all released statements.
The Mavs said they were “sickened and heartbroken by what we saw in the videos,” and added their organization will “remain committed to being part of the solution.”
“Our hearts are broken. Yet again,” said part of the statement from the Miami Heat. And the Memphis Grizzlies wrote in part: “We are distraught to find ourselves dealing with a needless loss of life due to police brutality, and this time it was one of Memphis’ own.”
On January 7th, Nichols was on his way home from taking pictures of the sky when police pulled him over. He was just a few minutes from the home he shared with his mother and stepfather.
Nichols, who was Black and a father, was killed. All five officers, also Black, are facing second-degree murder charges in addition to charges of aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression.
The NBA also released a statement that read in part:
“The images of Tyre Nichols’ life needlessly cut short are horrifying. While there have been steps toward accountability in this instance, the NBA family remains committed to partnering with advocates, policymakers and law enforcement to work toward solutions to the issues we continue to face.” “WE ARE OUR OWN WORSE ENEMY!!!” Lebron James tweeted in all caps after the video was released.