Iowa City mayor, police chief issue joint statement denouncing police brutality

The statement came after the release of the murder of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee, on Jan. 7.


Gabby Drees

Iowa City mayor Bruce Teague welcomes Iowa Democratic gubernatorial candidate Deidre DeJear at a town hall, hosted by the University Democrats at Iowa, at the Iowa Memorial Union on Monday, Sept. 26, 2022. DeJear spoke about education and health care access in Iowa, before fielding questions from the public.

Archie Wagner, News Reporter

Iowa City Mayor Bruce Teague and Iowa City Police Chief Dustin Liston released a joint statement Friday regarding the murder of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee. 

Nichols died in the hospital on Jan. 10 after being beaten by five Memphis Police Department officers on Jan. 7. Citizens across the U.S. gathered on Sunday for protests to denounce police brutality and vigils for Nichols. 

Teague and Liston issued the statement in response to the arrest video of Nichols, which was released earlier that day, in which he was tased, beaten, and pepper sprayed. 

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In the statement, Teague offered his support to the Iowa City community and the Black community in his statement. Teague also denounced the acts of violence taken against Nichols and acknowledged the community’s anger and despair. 

“We understand the unease that permeates the community following an event like this, and want you to know that we will continue to listen and learn from one another, and heal and grow stronger together,” Teague said in his statement. 

Liston joined Teague in denouncing the violence and emphasized that people deserve to be treated with dignity. 

“We commend the Memphis Police Department in taking swift action to address this horrific act and we offer our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Tyre Nichols and everyone else impacted by this tragedy,” Liston said. 

Given the strong emotions evoked by the footage released, the Iowa City Police Department recommended those affected to reach out to community resources, such as Mobile Crisis and the 988 suicide and crisis lifeline.