Eric Adams calls for peace in front of Tire Nichols’ bodycam video

Mayor Eric Adams told New Yorkers that the Memphis police officers charged in the horrific death of a Tire Nichols who was stopped at a traffic stop “betrayed” their profession when he called for calm on the streets of the Big Apple in the coming days.

“As a person, I’m devastated; As mayor, I’m outraged,” Adams said.

“As someone who has fought for police diversity and against police abuse for decades, I feel betrayed by these officers.”

Hizzoner’s comments came as the nation sat nervously awaiting the release of the chilling video, which is expected to be released later Friday and which Tennessee authorities have described as “absolutely appalling.”

Both the 29-year-old victim and the five police officers involved are black. State prosecutors have already charged the quintet with second-degree murder, aggravated kidnapping and misconduct.

During the brief speech, Adams made direct connections between the scenes set a thousand miles away and his own biography — a victim of police brutality turned police officer who advocated for reform in then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s NYPD — as he appealed for any Big Apple protested to remain peaceful and the police to show restraint.

“Any officer who engages in violence and brutality tarnishes all of the work we have done to keep communities safe and foster a better relationship between police and the communities they serve,” he added added.

Eric Adams
Eric Adams called for peace ahead of the release of Tire Nichols’ video.
Matthew McDermott

Adams also applauded prosecutors and local officers in Tennessee for quickly filing charges against the officers and dismissing them from the Memphis Police Department.

Read more about the Post’s coverage of Tire Nichols’ death

“My message to the New Yorker is to respect Mr. Nichols’ mother’s wishes. If you must express your anger and outrage, do so peacefully,” Adams concluded. “My message to the NYPD has been, and will continue to be, to exercise restraint.”

Tire Nichols
Tire Nichols was stopped at a traffic stop and brutally beaten.
Ben Crump Law

Adams took to the podium in the Blue Room at City Hall just after 5:00 p.m. to deliver the speech. Just moments before his speech, Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell was seen leaving City Hall.

Governor Kathy Hochul earlier Friday called for all who protest to remain peaceful and said local and state police stand ready to respond to any protests that turn violent.

“I will ask everyone to heed the words of Tire Nichols’ mother on behalf of her family and his four-year-old child,” Hochul told reporters at a previous press briefing with the mayor in Lower Manhattan. “If you wish to protest, please do so peacefully, in memory of your son. And we all need to take that to heart.

Local authorities in Tennessee have charged all five police officers involved in the Tire Nichols transfer in Memphis with second-degree murder and a variety of other charges.

“Let me be clear: what happened here does not reflect proper policing at all. That was wrong. That was criminal,” said David Rausch, director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, during the news conference.

Lawyers for the Nichols family have compared the approximately three-minute tape to Rodney King’s infamous caning in Los Angeles in 1991.

Tire Nichols
Lawyers for the Nichols family have compared the tape to Rodney King’s caning.
Tire Nichols family

His family has urged the protesters to remain peaceful.

“I don’t want us to burn our town down and tear up the streets because that’s not what my son stood for,” his mother, RowVaughn Wells, said at a prayer vigil late Thursday. “If you are here for me and Tyre, you will protest peacefully. You can get your point across, but we don’t have to tear up our cities, folks, because we have to live in them.”

With postal wires Eric Adams calls for peace in front of Tire Nichols’ bodycam video


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