Senator Steven Bradford (File photo)

Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena): “The beating and murder of Tyre Nichols by five Memphis Police Officers is brutal and heart-breaking.   In the video, I see no ‘protect and serve.’ I see an out of control and outside the bounds of their authority attack on an unarmed Black man. This is yet another example of the need to hold police officers accountable regardless of the color of their skin.

“The City of Memphis has taken swift action. These officers have been fired, arrested and are now charged with murder. They will answer for their actions. Mr. Nichols’ family and loved ones deserve justice. We ask our police officers to do difficult jobs. We know the job is not easy. But we will no longer tolerate abuse and criminal actions by anyone because they wear a badge.

“My legislation, S.B. 2, signed into law in 2021 creates a process to make sure bad police officers who break the law can never wear a badge again in California. This legislation will save lives.   I am working on new legislation at this moment, S.B. 50, which would prohibit police from making traffic stops for low-level violations. This will reduce the potential for more harm to innocent members of the public.”

Governor Gavin Newsom (CBM)

Governor Gavin Newsom: “Jennifer and I send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Tyre Nichols. Tyre Nichols should be alive today. The video released shows abhorrent behavior and these officers must be held accountable for their deadly actions and clear abuse of power. Today, we are a country in mourning, and must continue our work nationwide to push reforms to prevent excessive use of force and save lives.”

Pastor Eddie Anderson (File photo)

Rev. Eddie Anderson, Senior Pastor of McCarty Memorial Christian Church and South LA Regional Community Organizer for LA Voice: “Philando Castile. Sandra Bland. Keenan Anderson. Tyre Nichols. I say the names of these Black men and women, and thousands of others, and I am filled with sadness and righteous rage. Each one of them was brutally murdered by law enforcement with little care or concern for their dignity or human rights. The immoral culture of impunity and abuse among law enforcement that is inflicted upon Black people is not new — who could forget the brutal beating of Rodney King — but with the ever-increasing militarization of police departments across the country, and their ever-increasing budgets, we are at a tipping point.

“As a member of the clergy, I cannot sit idly by and watch as Black people are being killed by law enforcement and lawmakers feign helplessness. I pray for the souls of those lost and for safety for my community, and I demand justice. I demand accountability. I demand legislation that reins in law enforcement, and I demand that instead of putting money into police budgets, we invest in our communities through affordable housing, guaranteed basic income and other safety net programs, and policies that help all members of our communities — including those formerly-incarcerated — live their lives with dignity. Until this American project deals with the racist roots of policing we will never be safe, and ‘protection’ will continue to be a perpetual nightmare for Black people and people of color.”

Pastor Najuma Smith-Pollard (File photo)

Rev. Dr. Najuma Smith-Pollard, Founding Pastor of Word of Encouragement Church and LA Voice Board Member: “Failure to comply in a non-lethal situation should never equal authorization to kill! And we as a society should never ever be okay with someone being killed because they failed to comply and they were not presenting a lethal threat!”

Rabbi Sharon Brous (

Rabbi Sharon Brous, Founder and Senior Rabbi of IKAR: “The Jewish tradition teaches that every person is accompanied, at all times, by a procession of angels crying out: Make way, for an image of the Holy One is approaching! Every person, like royalty. Infinitely worthy. Irreplaceable. And yet, again and again, the image of the Holy One is controlled and contained, humiliated and degraded, incarcerated and incapacitated, shot and killed before our very eyes. We will not rest until we build a society in which Tyre, Tortuguita, Keenan and so many others are treated as precious images of the Holy One. May their memories stir us to work toward a more just and loving world.”

Pastor Cedric Nelms (

Pastor Cedric Nelms, Chosen Generation Fellowship Church: “The constant attacks and disregard for Black bodies is something that is not new to this nation. It has been indoctrinated into the fabric of this country in every niche and system. There are far too many names to list that have been murdered in our community at the hands of those that have been put into position to serve. As someone that is part of the community that looks like Tyre Nichols, Mike Brown, Keenan Anderson, Daunte Wright, Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, Stephon Clark, and countless others it is grossly despicable the injustice that is so pervasive in communities of color, especially the Black community. As someone that is part of the clergy and leads a church in the Black community, those that are entrusted to my care are hurt and angry. Today there needs to be change! I am tired and frustrated with the lack of compassion and lack of accountability when it comes to the assault on the lives and bodies of Black men and women.

“It is time for radical change to how policing is done in this nation. It is time for the lives and bodies of Black men and women to be treated with respect and dignity. It is time for the local, state, and federal government to make changes to how immunity is handled in regards to police. It is deplorable that Black men, women, children have to deal with societal issues, such as a lack of affordable housing, lack of guaranteed basic income, lack of an equitable educational system, affordable health care, and the list goes on. And on top of that, to be worried and mentally traumatized by the murder and disregard for their bodies based on the color of their skin. TODAY there needs to be a change!”

Danielle Melfi (

Danielle Melfi, Executive Director, Building Back Together: “The video released of the beating that led to Tyre Nichols’ death is disgusting, brutal, and horrifyingly familiar. We share in the outrage and pain at this footage, and remember Tyre for the life he lived; he was a devoted son, brother, and father, and a beloved member of the Memphis community. He should be alive today – as should countless victims of police brutality going back decades, an overwhelming number of them Black Americans. Turning a blind eye to this generational injustice is unacceptable, and Tyre and his family deserve swift justice. Every American should be treated fairly and with dignity when interacting with police. Tyre’s death is a gut-wrenching reminder that we have a long way to go in making that a reality.
“President Biden and Vice President Harris have led on this issue, including through an executive order on justice and policing, but as they have said many times, this is not enough. Congress must pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. We cannot erase generations of trauma; we cannot bring back those whose lives were taken too soon; but we can prevent future deaths and make our country safer for Black Americans. We pray for Tyre’s family, for the city of Memphis, for the Black community, and for our nation. Enough.”

Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs (ALADS): “We send our deepest condolences to the family of Tyre Nichols. The video released today by the Memphis Police Department is shocking and disturbing. The acts committed have no explanation and illustrate disregard for human life. Those of us in law enforcement take an oath to uphold the law, but men and women in uniform across this country also go about this daily task while respecting the public. As one of the largest law enforcement unions, ALADS and its members remain committed to working together to continue to build on the improvements we have made in the last two years. Unfortunately, this tragic incident forces all of us to pause and reflect.”

National Legal Aid & Defender Association: “NLADA joins our diverse community of civil legal aid providers, public defenders, and client community advocates in voicing our collective outrage at the ongoing loss of Black lives through the use of excessive force by law enforcement officers. The footage and information released today have made us all witness to the horrifying and cruel taking of Mr. Nichols’s life, and we stand with his family, friends, and community to grieve their loss. Furthermore, the recordings and additional details confirm our longstanding belief that we must address the underlying societal views, structures, and indoctrination that perpetuate and normalize disparate, violent, and deadly treatment of people of color. The inhumane treatment of those like Mr. Nichols, who are being arrested or accused, is a part of a deeply entrenched problem with our criminal legal system. Mr. Nichols’s death reminds us that we must continue to advance equity and justice for those who come into contact with the criminal system, and how far we still have to go. The NLADA community is committed to addressing the significant systemic role that race plays in policing practices and to building enduring alliances with impacted communities. Public defense, civil legal aid, and client community advocates will continue to partner together and with others to combat the injustices ingrained in our systems.

Jamie L. Munson, Catholics for Choice: “The savage, brutal beating of Tyre Nichols by Memphis police officers is an unspeakable horror that breaks our hearts, boils our blood, shocks our conscience, and cries out to heaven. It feels so hollow to call for ‘justice,’ because in a truly just world, Tyre Nichols would be alive, not a hashtag. Instead, a mother weeps for her son, a daughter has lost her father, and a family, a community, and a nation are devastated. Tyre Nichols’ life matters, and we say his name.

“The systematic and disproportionate targeting of Black and brown Americans by the police is a reproductive justice issue, because every person has the right to raise their children in nurturing, supporting, and safe environments — but police brutality against people of color robs them of autonomy and control over their bodies, their lives, and their families. No mother should ever have to endure what Tyre’s mother RowVaughn is going through, having seen her child’s body so bloodied and brutalized. No parent should ever have to think twice about having children, as so many Black parents do, for fear that their child could be next.

“It is not lost on us that Nichols’ murder took place in Tennessee, a state whose governor is fond of calling it ‘one of the most pro-life states in America.’ But Black Lives Matter is a pro-life issue — and a place where Black and brown folks are not safe in the hands of law enforcement cannot honestly call itself ‘pro-life.’ Black Lives Matter is a moral imperative. It may be too late for justice for Tyre Nichols, but if we dismantle the sinful structures of racism and white supremacy that led to his death, we can honor his memory and bring ourselves closer to peace.”