The White House sent the following to the press list Friday night at 7:27 p.m.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2023
Statement from President Joe Biden on Tyre Nichols
Like so many, I was outraged and deeply pained to see the horrific video of the beating that resulted in Tyre Nichols’ death. It is yet another painful reminder of the profound fear and trauma, the pain, and the exhaustion that Black and Brown Americans experience every single day.
My heart goes out to Tyre Nichols’ family and to Americans in Memphis and across the country who are grieving this tremendously painful loss. The footage that was released this evening will leave people justifiably outraged. Those who seek justice should not to resort to violence or destruction. Violence is never acceptable; it is illegal and destructive. I join Mr. Nichols’ family in calling for peaceful protest.
I spoke with RowVaughn Wells and Rodney Wells, Mr. Nichols’ mother and stepfather, this afternoon. There are no words to describe the heartbreak and grief of losing a beloved child and young father. Nothing can bring Mr. Nichols back to his family and the Memphis community. But Mr. and Mrs. Wells, Mr. Nichols’ son, and his whole family deserve a swift, full, and transparent investigation.
We must do everything in our power to ensure our criminal justice system lives up to the promise of fair and impartial justice, equal treatment, and dignity for all. Real and lasting change will only come if we take action to prevent tragedies like this from ever happening again. That is why I called on Congress to send the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to my desk. When Senate Republicans blocked that bill, I signed an executive order that mandated stricter use of force standards and accountability provisions for federal law enforcement, as well as measures to strengthen accountability at the state and local level.
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
January 27, 2023
REMARKS BY PRESIDENT BIDEN
BEFORE MARINE ONE DEPARTURE
|5:49 P.M. EST|
Q Talk to us about Tyre Nichols, Mr. President.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes. I spoke with Tyre’s mother and expressed my condolences, and told her that I was going to be making the case to the Congress to pass the George Floyd Act. We should get this under control. I can only do so much in an executive order at a federal level.
And — and the prayers — I was really pleased that she called for no — peaceful protests, no — no violence, no movement at all. And so, I — you know, I spoke with her about, I don’t know, 10, 15 minutes. And —
Q How concerned are you, sir, about the violence and the potential for that?
THE PRESIDENT: Well — well, I am. I’m — I’m obviously very concerned about it. But I think she has made a very strong plea. She’s obviously in enormous pain.
She talked about, as you heard her when she spoke publicly — but she also talked about how — how she didn’t know what she was going to do. And I told her that — that it — that — I told her I had some idea of what that loss was like and that although it’s impossible to believe now, the time will come when his memory brings a smile before a tear. And she said she already is thinking about what — what he would want her to do, which is — which is very positive. So —
Q What is at stake tonight, sir, with the nation watching this video tape and what could happen? What is at stake?
THE PRESIDENT: What’s at stake is, first of all, innocent people’s lives, number one.
Number two, it has a lot to say and do with the image of America. It has a lot to do with whether or not we are the country we say we are — that we’re a country of law and order and means by which we can peacefully protest and let the courts make their judgments.
Thank you very much.
5:51 P.M. EST