Local law enforcement officials release statement on death of Tyre Nichols

Published 2:20 pm Saturday, January 28, 2023

BERRIEN COUNTY — Berrien County law enforcement officials have released a statement on the death of Tyre Nichols by former members of the Memphis Police Department

Nichols, a 29, was pulled over in Memphis, Tennessee on Jan. 7 for what police said was reckless driving. After attempting to run on foot, new police footage shows that Nichols was aggressively beaten by police and passed away in the hospital three days later. Officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr. and Justin Smith each face multiple charges.

In the joint statement, officials said they were “horrified” by what police footage revealed about Nichols’ death.

The full statement can be read below:
As your law enforcement leaders serving Berrien County, we are horrified by the vicious  attack on Tyre Nichols by the former members of the Memphis Police Department. What  they have done, and what we have witnessed in the graphic videos, leave each of us  disgusted at the actions of those former police officers. This incident is in complete  opposition to everything we stand for in law enforcement. 

We support the quick and appropriate actions by the Chief of Police of the Memphis  Police Department in firing those responsible and charging them with murder. They  have disgraced the law enforcement profession and betrayed their oath of office. The  use of excessive force is always unacceptable.  

We all have sworn to protect and serve the residents of our communities with  professionalism and compassion and we will continue to do so. We are committed to  and train to protect human life and to treat everyone with dignity and respect. We will  continue to ensure the equal treatment of ALL individuals. Each of us believe in having  open communication and true partnerships with our community. We are focused on  keeping Berrien County safe and we are committed to working together, with our community, to treat all residents with respect, fairness, and dignity.  


Sheriff L. Paul Bailey, Berrien County Sheriff’s Office  

Undersheriff Chuck Heit, Berrien County Sheriff’s Office 

Inspector Ryan Schoonveld, Michigan State Police 5th District Headquarters Lieutenant Jeremy Carlisle, Michigan State Police Niles Post  

Prosecutor Steve Pierangeli, Berrien County Prosecutors Office  

Director Daniel McGinnis, Benton Harbor Department of Public Safety 

Chief Greg Abrams, Benton Charter Township Police Department  

Director Steve Neubecker, St Joseph City Department of Public Safety 

Director James Millin, Niles City Police Department 

Chief Paul Toliver, Berrien Springs-Oronoko Township Police Department 

Chief Gary Soper, Lincoln Township Police Department  

Chief Randy Leng, St Joseph Charter Township Police Department 

Chief Daniel Unruh, Bridgman City Police Department 

Chief Wes Smigielski, Coloma Township Police Department 

Chief William Lux, Pokagon Tribal Police Department 

Chief Tim Sutherland, Watervliet City Police Department 

Chief Rich Killips, New Buffalo City Police Department 

Director Timothy Ganus, Buchanan City Police Department 

Chief Shawn Martin, Baroda-Lake Township Police Department 

Chief Todd Taylor, Chikaming Township Police Department 

Chief Ryan Layman, Grand Beach-Michiana Village Police Department Chief Carl Krause, Three Oaks Township Police Department  

Chief Charles Sherene, Eau Claire Village Police Department 

Chief Robert Krauss, Galien Village Police Department”