Protests in almost a dozen of cities across the United States have erupted in the hours since the Memphis Police Department (MPD) released body cam footage of the fatal beating of Tyre Nichols by five Memphis police officers. Protesters have gathered in Washington DC, New York, Memphis, Atlanta, and several other major cities.

The bodycam and surveillance video show the January 7 traffic stop and violent police confrontation that led to the death of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols. The video, which involved five Black officers, shows Nichols being tased and belted with a baton, repeatedly kicked in the face and brutalized despite seeming to put up no resistance

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Georgia State Patrol vehicles were escorting state National Guard troops in downtown Atlanta Friday. Governor Brian Kemp on Thursday announced a state of emergency before the video’s anticipated release. His order made 1,000 Georgia National Guard troops available to respond to violence, rioting, and danger existing to persons and property.

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In Memphis, demonstrators started marching shortly after the video was released, taking over a local highway.
Protestors gathered in Atlanta and New York City, where there appeared to be some arrests also.

Nichols’ family, as well as US authorities, have urged protestors to remain peaceful. During a press conference on Friday, Rodney Wells, Nichols’ stepfather, said, “More than anything we want peace. We do not want any type of uproar, we do not want any type of disturbance.”

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Ana Santoyo, 33, a Chicago native running for alderperson, said the incident is another reminder that police brutality is pervasive in the United States “It’s not just bad apples. It’s the whole bunch,” she said.

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Kamran Sidiqi, 27, who helped organize the demonstration, said he hopes protests in Chicago and nationwide send a message that Memphis is not alone in its calls for justice for Nichols. Justice begins with seeing the officers involved convicted, he said.