Investigating the beating of a protester in Memphis, Tennessee, on January 7, 2007, at the site of the “Melbourne massacre”
There have been questions about whether there could be more charges in the case after hundreds of protesters took to the streets in the US over the weekend.
The Memphis Police Department ceased the special unit that stopped and beat Nichols on January 7. The death was reported three days later.
As the investigation continues, Nichols’ family attorney Ben Crump said he thinks there will be additional fallout, but “whether that’s going to lead to criminal charges, we have to see.”
Steve Mulroy can’t comment on whether there will be further charges brought or not, but he says nothing we did last week precluded them from filing additional charges later.
The officials knew releasing the video without any charges was sacrosanct. “The best solution was to expedite the investigation and to expedite the consideration of charges so that the charges could come first and then the release of the video,” he added.
The release of video footage renewed calls for police reform, as well as protesters taking to the streets in Los Angeles, Boston, and Atlanta, as a makeshift memorial grew on the corner where Nichols was beaten.
He was left slumped to the ground in handcuffs, and 23 minutes passed before a stretcher arrived at the scene. Nichols was eventually hospitalized and died three days later.
The Memphis Police Department is a better system than what we have seen in the case of a brutalized Memphis man, Nichols Haley
The Memphis Police Department wrote to Haley and the other officers requesting that they be decertified because of their on-duty conduct.
Demonstrators marched through New York City, Atlanta, Boston, Baltimore, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Portland, among other cities across the nation on Saturday, raising signs bearing Nichols’ name and calling for an end to abuses of authority.
The family remembered him as a good son and father, who enjoyed skateboarding, photography and sunsets. They recalled his smile and hugs and mourned the moments they’ll never have again.
The Memphis Police Department must take proactive steps in the healing process for all those affected by the heinous actions of a few.
The culture of the SCORPION unit was found to be related to the conduct shown in the video. “So we demanded that they disbanded immediately before we see anything like this happen again.”
The mayor is correct in shutting it down. These kinds of actions are not representative of the Memphis Police Department,” Colvett said.
City law enforcement officials are being hailed for their rapid investigations and transparency, compared to other cities in the US, after the brutalizing of a man by Memphis police officers.
“We saw a very peaceful and direct sense of protest in the city of Memphis, and I think it’s because maybe we do have faith and hope that the system is going to get it right this time,” Easter-Thomas said.
What did Nichols do in the Memphis Police Department tell us in response to his testimony against the GEJP Charged in Mills? An Activist’s Perspective
The officers are planning to go on trial on February 17.
The attorney for one of the officers indicted, Mills Jr., put out a statement Friday night saying that he didn’t cross lines “that others crossed” during the confrontation. The attorney, Blake Ballin, told CNN Mills was a “victim” of the system he worked within.”
Other first responders have been fired or suspended in the weeks since Nichols’ death. The police department announced that a sixth officer had been fired and a seventh relieved of duty, while the fire department fired two EMTs and a lieutenant after an internal review. The officials said as many as 13 police officers could be disciplined.
Crump called on Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which passed the Democratic-controlled House in 2021 but not the evenly split Senate.
Steven Horsford, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, wrote in a news release Sunday that the caucus would like a meeting with the president to push for talks on police reform.
Crump said that the quick firing and arrests of the police officers and release of video should be a “blueprint” for how police brutality allegations are handled going forward. He was happy that Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis had charged the officers within 20 days.
She had no applause for Congress, who she called to action saying, “by failing to craft and pass bills to stop police brutality, you’re writing another Black man’s obituary. The blood of Black America is on your hands. So stand up and do something.”
On the Impact of a Police Officer’s Black Dog on the Public Safety and Public Welfare of Black People in the Memphis General Relatives
The two Democratic state lawmakers said Saturday that they would file police reform legislation before Tuesday’s filing deadline.
While Democrats hold the minority with 24 representatives compared to the Republican majority of 99 representatives, Rep. Joe Towns Jr. said this legislation is not partisan and should pass on both sides of the legislature.
“You would be hard-pressed to look at this footage (of Tyre Nichols) and see what happened to that young man, OK, and not want to do something. Would this county still exist if the dog was beaten like that? Towns said something.
The official response to the vicious beating of a man by Memphis police is already underway two days after the video of the incident went public.
Meanwhile, protesters continue to take to the streets of Memphis and elsewhere around the nation to express outrage at the incident and to again protest against the treatment of Black people by police.
“We hope that other cities take similar action with their saturation police units, to begin to create greater trust in their communities,” the attorneys said. We must remember that this is not the last step in the journey for justice and accountability as there is more to come. It goes on so much further.
The Memphis Nichols Case Revisited: A First Look at the Memphis Police’s Response to a Vandal-Case Injuries
House Democratic Caucus Chair John Ray Clemmons, Rep. G.A. Hardaway and Rep. Joe Towns, Jr., announced their plan during a press conference on Saturday.
Some of the bills aim to address issues such as implicit bias training, limits on officers transferring departments after being disciplined or being fired and a reevaluation of low-level traffic stops.
Republicans hold a sizable majority in the Tennessee General Assembly, but the Democrats said they were confident they could get bipartisan support because of the magnitude of the incident, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reported.
I don’t think we’ll be able to keep up with them without federal police reform, that’s what I believe, he told ABC’s This Week
The Justice in Policing Act would prohibit chokeholds, no-knock warrants and end qualified immunity for law enforcement officers.
The five former Memphis police officers are charged with second-degree murder and other crimes.
“If we look at some past incidents in our country, there’s been some mistakes made,” said Ron Johnson, a former Missouri State Highway Patrol captain, referring to the handling of previous cases of police brutality. “I think a lot of things have been done right” in this case.
“A year ago, two years ago, we wouldn’t have seen some of the things we’re seeing here,” Johnson said of Memphis law enforcement’s handling of Nichols’ death.
Taylor’s case had an initial statement from police saying that there was no forced entry. Before she was shot, officers entered her home with a battering ram. Minneapolis police initially said Floyd “appeared to be suffering medical distress.” But video showed Officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes.
The newly released documents are part of a request by the Memphis Police Department that the five officers who have been charged with murder be decertified and prohibited from working in law enforcement again. Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis signed each of the five requests to decertify the officers.
Still, law enforcement and legal analysts are now pointing to Memphis’ actions as a new example of how to maintain trust in the community after fatal police encounters.
Body camera footage of the brutal incident, released late last month, cast a spotlight on the city’s law enforcement practices and renewed calls for police reform nationwide.
Memphis Police Officer Tyre Nichols Case: A High-profile, Rapidly-Civil-Legal-Leading, High-Dimensional Collision
The preliminary results of an autopsy commissioned by attorneys for Nichols’ family said he suffered “extensive bleeding caused by a severe beating,” family attorney Benjamin Crump said this week.
Chief Davis promised “appropriate action” after he noted the serious nature of the officers’ conduct during the stop. She said that the department was giving notice to the officers.
The department said that five officers had their jobs terminated because of their excessive use of force, duty to intervene, and duty to render aid.
According to Areva Martin, an attorney and legal affairs commentator, the police department learned from other high-profile cases when the district attorneys did not act quickly.
“They did the right thing in this case by convening a grand jury, investigating the case quickly, and then charging these officers, bringing them into custody.”
Memphis has quickly filed criminal charges, compared to other cities that have taken months or years to file brutality cases.
CNN political analyst Bakari Sellers said the swiftness of the charges reminded him of the case involving the April 2015 death of Walter Scott, who was fatally shot in the back after officers pulled him over for a broken brake light in South Carolina.
The former police officer from North Charleston was indicted on a murder charge almost two months after the shooting. The former officer’s 2016 state murder trial ended in a mistrial but Slager pleaded guilty to violation of civil rights by acting under the color of law in Scott’s killing. He was sent to prison for 20 years.
When Law Enforcement Arises to Warp Against Protests: The Memphis Bridge as a Roadblock for Demonstration
“The last thing you want to do is take a high tension event and then add that thing that’s going to increase tension … on a Friday night knowing that people don’t have to be at work in the morning and they have the whole weekend ahead of them,” said CNN law enforcement analyst John Miller.
The delay allowed authorities to show the public that the wheels of justice are turning quickly. The additional time allowed officials to call for calm, as well as to unify the faith community, the family’s lawyers and the key community contacts.
Police departments throughout the country, including Los Angeles, Atlanta, Minneapolis, Nashville, and New York, said they were either keeping an eye on events or have plans in place for protests.
Over the last few years, we have watched many of these cases. When law enforcement authorities come forward and are open about their activities, we usually see a peaceful response.
The bridge over I-55 in Memphis became a roadblock for protesters after videos went online, blocking both lanes of the highway. There were no arrests.
After the EMTs arrived and before the ambulance arrived, first responders repeatedly walked away from him as he fell on his side, according to a video released Friday.
Memphis, Mississippi, PD Officers and the Black Community: After the Nichols Shooting, the Memphis Police purged the cpsi
The mother said that the officers charged with her son’s death brought shame to their own families. They brought shame to the Black community.”
The footage of the shooting of Nichols has left unanswered questions about what MemphisPD did to prevent it, according to a retired Los Angeles police sergeant.
“All of this was preventable,” she told CNN Saturday. You have young officers who are out there doing what they do on a regular basis. This was not anything that they aren’t accustomed to doing.”
Memphis City Council Chairman Martavius Jones grew emotional after watching the video, telling CNN that despite the positive shift in the handling of brutality cases, much more needs to be done.
It is heartbreaking to see the events unfold with this situation. I have a son,” said Kiara Hill, standing at a makeshift memorial near the Memphis corner where Nichols was beaten. “And Tyre, out of the officers on the scene, he was the calmest.”
When White police officers commit crimes against citizens, then we want them to act just as swiftly as the chief said, but we need to see it too.
But disbanding the unit without giving officers new training would be “putting lipstick on a pig,” city council chair Martavius Jones told CNN Saturday.
Tim Scott and Tyre Nichols, a father and grandfather of four children, spokeswoman for a national conversation about policing
The chairman of the senate judiciary committee called for the revival of national police reform legislation, which was stopped by congress.
It is the right starting point, and the chairman of the subcommittee has been working on it for years. I think he and Tim Scott have to sit down again soon to see if they can revive that effort. He called for a national conversation about policing, in a responsible, constitutional and humane way.
The 29-year-old was a father and also the baby of his family, the youngest of four children. His mother said that he spent his Sunday doing laundry and preparing for the week.
The mother of Nichols created the fund which raised more than $1,000,000 by Sunday afternoon. According to the page, the donations will help with the cost of Wells and her husband’s mental health services and time off from their jobs. It says that they want to build a memorial skate park for Tyre, who loved skating and sunsets.
The officers and paramedics on the scene as well as those who filed the paperwork are being investigated by the district attorney.
Prosecutors moved “extraordinarily quick” with charges against the five officers “primarily responsible for the death of Tyre Nichols,” the district attorney said.
The Memphis City Council Reports a Charged Officer for the Decay of a Black Hole in Lake Noel on January 8th
I don’t think we have seen the end of it. And I think we’re going to find there’s more to this as we go into the trial,” Memphis City Council member Jeff Warren said. “I don’t think we’re on top of this yet.”
Warren said that they need to make sure that they see where they are weak, what happened with their procedures, and how their oversight went.
Police said on Monday that six officers were put on leave on January 8th and that two still are subject to an internal investigation.
Police identified one of the two officers as Preston Hemphill, who is White. Elder wouldn’t say if Hemphill is being paid.
The body-CAM video does not show the second site where the district attorney alleges that the man was beaten and seriously injured.
Emergency medical technicians Robert Long and JaMichael Sandridge, fire lieutenant, and fire officer, were terminated over their response to the encounter.
The fire chief says that the two EMTs who responded failed to conduct an adequate patient assessment of Mr. Nichols because of the initial nature of the call.
Attorneys for two police officers who were fired made comments to CNN. William Massey, the attorney for Martin, said there was no one out there that night who wanted to lose his life.
“Some of the questions that remain will require a focus on Desmond Mills’ individual actions,” and “on whether Desmond’s actions crossed the lines that were crossed by other officers during this incident,” Ballin said.
While some have praised Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis’ swift action in the case, she is also who created the now-deactivated SCORPION police unit that the charged officers were part of.
“They either failed by using excessive force; they failed him by severely beating him; they failed him by not intervening; they failed him by not rendering aid,” the attorney told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Monday.
Martin Luther King Jr.’s funeral and the use of force by the Memphis police in the investigation of the MHV “Nichols”
The attorney said that the family is still dealing with the loss of their loved one while also absorbing the breadth of the investigation.
A press conference is expected at Memphis’ Mason Temple Church of God in Christ headquarters, where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his final speech the day before he was assassinated.
Three weeks after he died following a beating by police that was caught on videotape and sparked a wave of protests, a funeral for the man is scheduled for Wednesday in Memphis.
Vice President Kamala Harris is expected to attend the funeral at the invitation of Nichols’ family. Tamika Palmer, the mother of Breonna Taylor, and Philonise Floyd, the brother of George Floyd, are also expected.
Services at the Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church in Memphis are scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. The time is central. The funeral would be broadcasted on the internet.
The two discipline cases about the use of force focused on whether the officers filed the required reports about the incidents and did not appear to examine if the officers’ used of force was warranted.
In the hearing, Haley said that he wrongly thought there was enough force to fill out the form. His lieutenant said Haley was a “hard-working officer” who “routinely makes good decisions” and “he was sure that this was a limited event.” Haley was given a written reprimand.
The hearing officer wrote that “Officer Haley took full ownership for the accident and was very humble during the hearing” and the violation was dismissed.
The Memphis Police Department Investigated a Domestic Abuse Case Involving a Slap-Induced Officer at Mills High School Using a Digital Assistant
Mills graduated with a degree in criminal justice from West Virginia State University in 2013 and began at the Memphis Police Department in March 2017.
In March 2019, Mills violated procedure when he dropped his personal digital assistant (PDA) into the street while entering his squad car. The device was then run over by a separate car.
It was Mills’ first infraction, and he immediately reported the incident to his union representative, so he received a written reprimand, according to department records.
Later that month, Mills failed to file a response to resistance form when he used physical force to take a woman down to the ground so she could be handcuffed and arrested. In the hearing in August 2021, Mills admitted he didn’t know his actions necessitated use of the form and was reprimanded again.
Martin and his partner found a loaded handgun in the rear passenger side of their squad car. Martin said he failed to do a proper pre- and post-shift inspection, and only inspected the car from the outside. During his shift that day, he and his partner conducted two traffic stops, in which the suspects were placed in the backseat where the gun was found. The officers didn’t inspect the car after the suspects left it. Martin was issued a three-day suspension without pay, according to the files.
A fellow officer and lieutenant at the disciplinary hearing defended Martin, saying the victim didn’t want a report and Martin is not one to “shirk responsibility.”
“Memphis Police Officers are directed by department policy and state law to make a complete report on the scene of Domestic abuse calls,” the hearing officer wrote. “The officer can’t base their decision to arrest on the victim’s consent or their perception of the victim’s willingness to cooperate with prosecution.”
The evaluation stated that Officer Martin is respectful when dealing with others regardless of their sex, race, age, or rank. “He approaches his calls with a positive attitude and is well received when dealing with the public. He is a very top leader in arrests and calls, and no one has complained about being arrested.
Smith began at the department in March 2018. He crashed into the rear of a vehicle after passing it, spinning it around and hitting a third vehicle with two people inside. The parties went to the hospital with non-critical conditions.
Smith said the driver of the second vehicle suddenly left his lane when he went right. He admitted to speeding, but he had a head injury that made it difficult for him to remember.
New documents released this week shed light on the alleged misconduct of the five officers charged in Nichols’ death, including an allegation that Haley took photos of Nichols as he lay bleeding against a police car. It’s reported that he then shared those images, including with non-police officers.
Haley’s lawyer declined to comment, and lawyers for the other four officers either declined to comment or did not respond to requests from The Associated Press.
Haley, who was driving an unmarked car and wore a black sweatshirt hoodie over his head, forced Nichols from his car using loud profanity, then sprayed him directly in the eyes with a chemical irritant spray, according to the statement.
The Cases against Six Shelby County Officers Charged with the Killing of a Non-Violating and Decertified Person
The decertification charges against Mills stated that theofficers were captured on a body worn camera making silly comments, laughing and boasting about their involvement.
Mills is accused of failing to give her mother an accurate account of what happened, as he admitted that he did not provide immediate medical aid and did not give a clear account of what happened.
A hearing officer wrote of Justin Smith: “You admitted you struck an unarmed and non-violent subject with a closed fist two to three times in the face because you and your partner were unable to handcuff him. … You sprayed the individual with your irritant spray and held him as other police officers kicked, punched, and pepper sprayed him.
The closed and pending cases connected to the six people charged with murder will be reviewed by the county district attorney’s office.
According to All Things Considered, the documents show a picture of officers with an unsportsmanlike attitude.
Police officials are accused of being dishonest or facing criminal charges when county officials put their names on a list.
Brandon Hall told the Commercial Appeal he was in the court when the prosecutor dropped the case, and expects similar outcomes in other cases.
Another defense attorney and former Shelby County prosecutor, Josh Corman, told the newspaper that prosecutors have been reviewing cases connected to the five officers and that he thinks “it would be a nightmare for any prosecutor to use them as a witness.”
The executive director of the Memphis Branch of the NAACP told a TV station that her office had received several police-related complaints after the death of Johnny Nichols, but didn’t say which specific officers or how they got the complaints.
She said that she’s afraid that other people have been treated this way. You definitely will have to reopen cases if they discover that someone might have been convicted for something they did not do.