In a press conference following the Celebration of Life service for Tyre Nichols, Rev. Al Sharpton continued his call for justice.
“We want to put this county on notice that we intend to be at the trials, the arraignments. We are mountain climbers and we are going to fight this battle with this family,” he said.
Sharpton, the founder of the National Action Network, echoed what many said during the service, calling on Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.
“All roads lead to legislation,” he said. “We are not going to stop until legislation is signed.”
Sharpton added “This is not the end of a funeral, but the beginning of a movement around legislation."
Some background: Originally introduced in 2020 and again in 2021, the legislation would set up a national registry of police misconduct to stop officers from evading consequences for their actions by moving to another jurisdiction.
It would ban racial and religious profiling by law enforcement at the federal, state and local levels, and it would overhaul qualified immunity, a legal doctrine that critics say shields law enforcement from accountability.
The bill twice cleared the House under Democratic control – in 2020 and 2021 – largely along party lines. But it never went anywhere in the Senate, even after Democrats won control in 2021, in part, because of disagreements about qualified immunity, which protects police officers from being sued in civil court.