Conn. (WTNH) — Connecticut officials are responding to the violent arrest and fatal beating of a Memphis man earlier this month following recently-released video footage.
The man, 29-year-old Tyre Nichols, died three days after he was beaten by police in a traffic stop on Jan. 7. On Friday, the city of Memphis released both body camera footage and street surveillance footage of the violent arrest in what the Memphis Police Chief CJ Davis described as a “disregard for a human being.”
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont responded to the video footage on Saturday, releasing the following statement:
Tyre Nichols should be alive today. His life matters, and my heart breaks for his family, friends, and loved ones. His last word was ‘mom.’
I was struck by the beautiful photos taken by Tyre, which serve as a stark contrast to the horrifying video and images released last night. His family and our nation deserve a swift, thorough, and transparent investigation.
We cannot continue this way. We must create a more just society for everyone. I’m committed to continuing that work here in Connecticut.
Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz echoed similar sentiments, noting that the murder of Nichols at the hands of Memphis police is “not only disgusting and enraging, but completely depraved.”
I am devastated for the Nichols family, and my heart goes out to his friends and loved ones, and to his mother, who had to hear her son cry out for her in his final moments. My thoughts are with his family and the City of Memphis during this tragic time.
Together, we will grieve as a country, but through our grief, we must act. Officers of the law are meant to serve and protect their communities, and it is our job now to make sure these officers are held accountable to the highest degree of that law, the law they were meant to uphold. It is incumbent upon us as leaders to ensure our criminal justice system lives up to its principles of equality and impartial justice, and we will continue to work together to ensure accountability at our state and local levels.
Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) described the murder as “stomach turning and heartbreaking,” noting that “we cannot turn away from Tyre Nichols’ brutal death.”
“His family, community, and all America demand and deserve justice,” Blumenthal said.