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Cruel, unjust, evil’: Christian leaders react to the police killing of Tyre Nichols

Many prominent Christian leaders from across theological backgrounds have weighed in on the police killing of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols earlier this month, denouncing the incident as inhumane.

Last week, security footage was released showing Nichols being brutally beaten by five police officers, all of whom were black, in Memphis, Tennessee, during a routine traffic stop on Jan. 7. He succumbed to his injuries in the hospital three days later on Jan. 10. 

Memphis officials recently released multiple videos of the incident. It took 26 minutes for Nichols to begin receiving medical treatment after being assaulted by officers. There was no indication that Nichols fought back. The officers were charged with second-degree murder, official misconduct and aggravated kidnapping.

Protests over the killing of Tyre Nichols began on January 27, 2023, following the release of police body camera and surveillance footage showing five Black officers from the Memphis Police Department beating Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man. The police assault on Nichols occurred on January 7, 2023, and he died three days later in a hospital. The five officers were subsequently fired and charged with second-degree murder. Protests first emerged in Memphis, Tennessee, and spread to several cities in the United States. Protesters demanded legal accountability for the officers responsible for Nichols death and for the enactment of police-reform measures.

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