Students voice their thoughts on the death of Tyre Nichols


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Twenty-nine-year-old Tyre Nichols, who was from Sacramento, was pulled over for reckless driving and was assaulted by Memphis Police officers in Memphis, Tennessee on Jan. 7. Nichols died three days later on Jan. 10 from the assault and five officers are being charged with second-degree murder.

The brutal beating and death of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee by Memphis Police officers on Jan. 7 captured the attention of the country last month.

Nichols, who was from Sacramento, was pulled over by police officers for reckless driving. Nichols was sent to the hospital in critical condition after the altercation with police and he later died on Jan. 10 from the assault. The five officers who were arrested in connection to the beating were fired and charged with second-degree murder, according to an article published by ABC News.

Cosumnes River College students shared their feelings about the killing of Nichols.

“I’d want it to have a harsher punishment because obviously with first-degree murder comes harsher punishment,” said 18-year-old nursing major Alan Polanco. “The fact they had all this aggression simply come out of nowhere seems almost like it was not planned, but almost like they already kind of had a goal in mind and they already knew how far they can push things.”

Nineteen-year-old studio arts major Nina Coriano said the police don’t treat people as human beings.

“It’s really messed up that this happened,” Coriano said. “I feel like police officers really abused their authority or power to do such things. It really shows that they look for any little thing of suspicion and then just go towards it with full force.”

Coriano said Nichols did nothing wrong and is glad that the police officers got charged for their actions.

“There’s so much that could fall under reckless driving and he’s just going home, so he could just be tired and then go home and do something,” Coriano said. “That’s typically the officers’ fault for not doing their job properly, they’re too aggressive on this poor guy.”

Eighteen-year-old undeclared major Arleen Vastida said the death of Nichols is something we’ve seen over and over again.

“It’s just really sad and also that he has roots from Sacramento also as people here are affected by it as well,” Vastida said.

Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis said the incident was “heinous, reckless and inhumane” in a statement on Jan. 25.

Vastida said she thought it was clear that the police chief had to say they disagree with the actions of the officers to the public.

The body camera footage from all of the officers beating Nichols was released to the public by the city of Memphis on Jan. 27.

“I think that the public should be aware of the way things go down and that if it wasn’t released to the public then we really wouldn’t know what happened and they could’ve twisted it,” said 19-year-old environmental studies major Valeria Cuevas. “I also think that there’s a certain way that they should do it versus just giving it to any news outlet.”

Leonard Scott, 18, a computer science major, said the incident was tragic and sad that another Black man was brutally beaten by the police force.

“I feel like maybe there should be, I’m gonna say, shed more light on how police brutality really affects the citizens,” Scott said. “I feel like having the video release, it opens a lot of people’s eyes, and I think that’s always a good thing just to see it happen and what’s going on, like this stuff is real and it does happen.”

Yesenia Maldonado, a 27-year-old medical diagnostic sonography major, said it’s sad and unfair that Nichols died.

“I know that cops were doing their job, but they could have done it a more professional way,” Maldonado said. “The way they were on top of him and beaten him, it wasn’t necessary.”