RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Swift action from Memphis Police Chief C.J. Davis after five of her officers were accused of beating 29-year-old Tyre Nichols.
Gerald Givens, President of the Raleigh-APEX Chapter of the NAACP said this is a step toward accountability. " You see chiefs in communities around the country, are no longer tolerating police misconduct. They want communities to be safe. And communities can't be safe if the people who are supposed to be loving them are mistreating them," said Givens.
Greear Webb, a UNC student and social justice activist who grew up in Raleigh said this type of action is unique, but it's not enough. " While action has been taken pretty quickly to indict these officers, I don't think this is going to prevent police brutality from occurring against Black Americans in the future. And I think it's going to take systemic change led by young people like myself and others," explained Webb.
He said while the indictments may be viewed as a small measure of accountability, it's not true justice. "True justice for me, would be Tyre still here with us walking and living today. I'm looking for the justice system to actually be just for once, and to show that this cannot stand in this country, even though we see it time and time again," Webb continued.
And once again, America will play witness to another black man being brutally beaten by police.
Memphis Police Chief C.J. Davis said in a taped statement that her department is preparing for the release of the body camera video from the January 7th traffic stop that shows exactly what happened to Nichols. "I don't think it's going to be anything any of us can comprehend. I think that it's going to be gruesome. I think it's going to be violent and I'm not even sure if I want to watch it myself," continued Webb.
Dr. Deborah Stroman, a professor at UNC-Chapel Hill, who focuses on social issues and equity is encouraging those who will be triggered to not watch.
"The research is very clear that if this is triggering, as in, you've experienced, great emotion, where it actually prevented you from doing your daily job, being with your loved ones, then don't watch it," explained Stroman.
But for those who can watch, Stroman said to do so. That's where the truth may lie. "The learning will be for some people. Wow, I didn't know black officers acted this way as well. They do. They absolutely do. So for some, there might be some learning there. This is a system. It's filled with structural racism, just like every other system." explained Stroman.