US vice president Kamala Harris called for Congress to pass an act prompted by George Floyd’s death that would limit immunity for police officers at the funeral of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols.
After being invited to the pulpit by Rev Al Sharpton, she urged the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to be passed, saying: “We should not delay, we should not be denied – it is non-negotiable.”
Quoting religious scripture, she said: “Let our memory of Tyre shine a light on the path towards peace and justice.”
Ms Harris also praised the “courage and strength” of Tyre Nichols’s family at the 29-year-old’s funeral.
“We mourn with you and the people of this country mourn with you.
“Mothers around the world when their babies are born pray to God when they hold that child that that body and that life will be safe for the rest of his life.
“Yet we have a mother and a father who mourn the life of a young man who should be here today.
“They have a grandson who now does not have a father. His brothers and sister will lose the love of growing old with their baby brother.
“When we look at this situation, this is a family who lost their son and their brother through an act of violence at the hands and the feet of people who had been charged with keeping them safe,” she said.
“When I think of the courage and the strength of this family, I think it demands that we speak truth. This violence act was not in pursuit of public safety, it was not in the interest of keeping the public safe.
“Was he not also entitled to the right to be safe?”
She earlier offered her condolences to the family of Tyre Nichols who died three days after being beaten by police.
The families of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, who were killed by police officers in 2020, are among hundreds of mourners in the church.
Civil rights activist Reverend Al Sharpton is delivering the eulogy.
Photographs taken by Mr Nichols, as well as images of him as a child and doing his beloved hobby of skateboarding were shown to mourners along with a quote attributed to the 29-year-old: “My vision is to bring my viewers deep into what I am seeing through my eye and out through my lens.”
The ceremony is taking place in Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church in Memphis with the church’s celebration choir singing a chorus of “we love you Tyre” as mourners entered the church.
Mr Nichols’s black coffin was surrounded by flowers and a painting of Martin Luther King.
Tiffany Randal, mother of 29-year-old Jalen Randle who was shot by a police officer in Houston in 2022, dedicated a song to Mr Nichols’s family, saying: “I pray that God heals your broken heart. We are fighting together.
“All the mothers all over the world need to come together and stop all of this,” she said.
Mr Nichols, 29, was aggressively punched, kicked and hit with a baton by several Memphis police officers after he was pulled over in a traffic stop on 7 January.
Five police officers have so far been charged with second-degree murder and fired while two other officers were suspended from duty.
Memphis Fire Department also fired three staff members after an investigation found Mr Nichols was left without medical attention for almost 15 minutes after the assault.
Protests have also taken place in several US cities after the footage of the attack was released.