As the country gears up for potential violence in the wake of the Tyre Nichols incident in Memphis, one former police chief is speaking out, hoping to delineate true organic protesters from intentional, and often political, agitators.
Former Detroit Police Chief James Craig told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Friday that in the wake of the police-involved killing of George Floyd, his city was one of few major cities that did not make headlines for protest-related violence, like Philadelphia, Portland, Washington and New York did.
Host Tucker Carlson asked how, given that observation, Memphis police officials should respond to any inorganic protest behavior of the sort.
“Zero tolerance,” Craig said. “Detroit was one of the few big cities that wasn’t rioting. It wasn’t burning. There were a few attacks on police officers, but we took a firm position: We don’t tolerate violence.”
Craig criticized the Biden administration and Justice Department for what he called a weak stance toward Antifa in the wake of unrest following previous police-involved deaths.
“What is Biden’s DOJ doing about Antifa? Absolutely nothing, and it’s shameful,” he said. “Look, I get the [January 6] insurrection, but what are we doing about Antifa? They’re threatening cities across this country, and then people, they lie and say things like, ‘Well, you know, it was peaceful protesting.’”
“It’s not peaceful if you’re looting, setting up autonomous zones, taking over police stations, attacking police officers. That’s not peaceful, and so this madness needs to stop.”
Craig recounted how Biden once claimed proper police procedure for discharging a weapon at a threatening suspect is to “shoot ’em in the leg” instead of center mass.
“Are you kidding?” Craig asked. “When I last looked, Biden has never been a police officer. I’ve never been a president, but I do have a shred of common sense.”
Craig said anti-police activists like Antifa will use Nichols’ death to demonize all police instead of focusing on the five now-former officers indicted in the case.
“Can we just paint every police department with one broad brush? We can’t do it. When you talk about training — ‘ Well, all police are bad’ — no, they’re not. I’ve worked with some of the finest heroes in America for 44 years, and guess what? When we had a bad one, we dealt with that,” he said.
“So the question I have: Is this systemic? Is this a pattern and practice in this police department? I don’t know that.”
Craig underlined he knows Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis and believes her to be a “wonderful chief,” adding that makes him wonder about the culture within the “Scorpion” unit the five indicted former lawmen were part of.
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