"What happened in Memphis is obviously tragic. I've seen the video myself, and I will tell you, I was appalled. [I am] struggling to find a stronger word, but I will just tell you, I was appalled," Wray began during a press conference.
Nichols was the father of a four-year-old boy, an "avid skateboarder," and a FedEx driver, when he was pulled over under the suspicion of driving recklessly, reported USA Today. An autopsy revealed that he died from injuries sustained during an altercation with five Memphis Police Department officers; Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills, Jr., and Justin Smith — all of whom were fired and charged with murder.
The body cam footage is set to be released to the public later on Friday, which is expected to set off protests in Memphis.
Wray continued, saying the investigation, which was announced Jan 17, will be conducted in collaboration with the Justice Department and local law enforcement.
"The FBI, working with the Justice Department, takes great pride in our color of law investigations. And we will pursue, as has already been announced, an investigation here, and we'll do it professionally without fear or favor by the book, as I think is expected of us," he said. "As far as preparation, all of our field offices have been alerted to work closely with our state and local partners, including in particular, of course, in Memphis, in the event of something getting out of hand."
He offered his condolences to Nichols' family, then emphasized that "there's a right way and a wrong way in this country to express being upset or angry about something, and we need to make sure that if there is that sentiment expressed here, it's done in the right way."
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