Footage of fatal police stop shows victim ‘wasn’t driving recklessly’, contrary to initial police version
Memphis resident Tyre Nichols received a vicious beating after he was pulled over for reckless driving by police in unmarked cars on Jan. 7
Nichols died hospital on Jan 10, three days incident, from cardiac arrest and kidney failure
Memphis is on edge, preparing for the worst as footage of the brutal arrest will be uploaded to YouTube by the police department at 7pm EST, Friday, Jan 27
Memphis and other cities around the nation prep for possible protests as MPD release tape of police beating an unarmed black man to death, after unwarranted traffic stop
Memphis Police Chief, Cerelyn Davis, warned that the fatal traffic stop beating of Tyre Nichols by five ‘amped up’ cops was ‘worse than Rodney King’
Five Memphis Police officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills, Jr. and Justin Smith were fired 12 days later
They have been charged with charged second-degree murder in the death of Nichols
Two employees of the Memphis Fire Department were also terminated after the incident
City’s police chief said ‘We’re going to see acts in the bodycam that defy humanity’ adding that the officers could not show proof that Nichols was driving recklessly
Tyre Nichols, 29, died in hospital on January 10, three days after five officers of the Memphis Police Department viciously beat him during a January 7, traffic stop.
The city of Memphis is on edge, preparing for the worst as footage of the brutal arrest will be uploaded to YouTube by the police department at 7pm EST, Friday. Preventive measures are being taken amid fears of violent protests.
Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis said the footage is the worst she has witnessed in her career.
‘We are going to see acts that defy humanity, a disregard for life, duty of care and a level of physical interaction that is above and beyond what is required in law enforcement,’ she said Friday morning. Attorney’s for the victim’s family reportedly, have already viewed the footage which will be uploaded onto YouTube by the police department at 7pm EST – with actions being taken to prepare for violent protests.
Chief Davis warned that the footage of five officers beating Tyre Nichols to death is worse than that of Rodney King.
As shown in an infamous 1991 footage that led to mayhem and rampaging in Los Angeles, King was seen being savagely attacked and brutalized by LAPD officers.
Acquittal of the officers involved the following year sparked one of the worst race riots in US history.
Four of the five Memphis Police officers charged in the death of Tyre have been released on a combined $1million bond after being arrested yesterday.
Fired just seven days ago, former police officer Justin Smith, Desmond Mills Jr, Emmitt Martin III and Tadarrius Bean have all now been released from Shelby County Jail, according to court records.
A fifth officer, Demetrius Haley is still in jail with a $350,000 bond, with all five charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of official misconduct, and official oppression.
Shelby County District attorney Steve Mutlroy said Tyre was left bloody and bruised after he was pepper sprayed and beaten just yards from his home.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation conducted an independent investigation into the use of force by Memphis cops. All five were fired last Friday for violation of police, with City officials saying they were notified on January 15.
Two of the officers being part of a special team to stop street crime. Chief Davis said that the cops were ‘amped up’ when they stopped Nichols.
The five former Memphis police officers have been charged with second-degree murder and other crimes in the arrest and death of Tyre Nichols.
Tyre Nichols, 29, died in hospital on January 10, three days after a traffic stop that ended with him being severely injured.
The incident unfolded with police pulling Tyre Nichols over on suspicion of reckless driving at 8.30pm on January 7. Tyre allegedly, fled on foot after a ‘confrontation’ with officers police said, but he was apprehended shortly after.
An ambulance was called to the scene after Tyre complained of shortness of breath, and was transported to hospital in a critical condition.
Nichols died from his injuries sustained in the incident three days later, on January 10, and five days later the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation announced that they were looking into the circumstances of his death.
The five officers are relieved of duty while the investigation into their use of force continues. As preliminary findings indicated the serous nature of the offense, the officers connected with the arrest were given a notice regarding the impeding administrative actions.
Federal involvement with the case was made public on January 18, after the Department of Justice announced that a civil rights investigation has been opened into the death of Nichols.
Last Friday, January 20, the Memphis Police Department identified and fires five offices involved in the traffic stop, after it was determined that they violated of multiple department polices.
Officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills, Jr, and Justin Smith were terminated for failing in their ‘excessive use of force, duty to intervene, and duty to render aid’.
Two Memphis Fire Department employees who were part of Nichols’ ‘initial patient care’ were also fired.
In an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon, Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis said that the video of the attack on Nichol’s was the worst of her career.
She said that the nature of the stop was ‘very aggressive’ and it just ‘escalated from there.’
Davis told CNN that the video of the attack left her ‘outraged’ and that the level of violence was ‘incomprehensible’ to her.
She added: ‘I’m sure that individuals watching will feel what the family felt. And if you don’t, then you’re not a human being.
‘I would say it is about the same if not worse than the 1991 beating of Rodney King. A group think mentality.’
The police chief Davis said that there is ‘no proof’ that Tyre was driving recklessly when he was pulled over, with the officers involved having failed to substantiate claims that he was.
The Police Chief added that she heard Tyre call out for his mother in the video, which will be released later on today.
Nichols’ family has hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump to represent them, and also compared the beating of the FedEx worker to that of Rodney King.
The family and their attorney viewed the footage of his arrest for the first time on January 23. Crump compared it to the assault of Rodney King by LAPD officers in 1991.
Subsequently, all five officers were arrested and charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, two charges of aggravated kidnapping, two charges of official misconduct and one charge of official oppression on January 26. Four were released the next day, after paying bond of $250,000 each
Speaking to CNN, his mother Row Vaughn Wells said that her son was ‘beat like a pinata’.
She said: ‘Yes, he cried out for me, because I’m his mother. He was trying to get home to safety. He was a mamma’s boy.
‘He loves me to death. He has my name tattooed on his arm. He had Chron’s disease, and he had surgery in 2013.
‘I told my husband my stomach is hurting so bad, and once I found out what happened, it was just the fact that I was feeling my son’s pain
‘I was feeling my son’s pain as they were beating him to death. They brought shame to their own families. They brought shame to the black community.
‘I don’t hate anybody. That’s not in my nature, I just feel sorry for them because they did something horrendous.’
She also told Don Lemon that she was unable to watch the footage, leaving Tyre’s father, Rodney RowVaugh Wells to witness the ‘horrific’ footage.
Tyre Nichols’s parents, RowVaughn and Rodney Wells, about their drive to seek justice for their son
Tyre was reportedly able to get away from the officers after the initial stop, but they found him again at another location, with Davis adding: ‘There was an amount of aggression that was inexplicable.’
However, Davis said she does not believe that the incident was ‘racist’ – adding that it ‘takes of the table that issues and problems in law enforcement is about race.’
She went on: ‘It is about human dignity, integrity, accountability and the duty to protect. As this video will show – it doesn’t matter whose wearing the uniform.’
Memphis Police confirmed that they planned to release the video late on Friday to avoid any ‘peaceful protest’ disruptions to members of the community.
David Rausch, director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, described the video as ‘absolutely appalling.’
He said: ‘Let me be clear: What happened here does not at all reflect proper policing. This was wrong, and this was criminal.’
In addition to the five officers charged Thursday, Davis said in the statement that other officers also are under investigation.
Two Memphis Fire Department personnel also have been relieved of duty pending an investigation.
The family has set up a GoFundMe in Tyre’s name to help raise money for his funeral and case.
President Biden has also called for calm ahead of the release of the video – adding: ‘Outrage is understandable, but violence is never acceptable.’
He said: ‘As Americans grieve, the Department of Justice conducts its investigation, and state authorities continue their work, I join Tyre’s family in calling for peaceful protest.
‘Violence is destructive and against the law. It has no place in peaceful protests seeking justice.’
‘Tyre’s death is a painful reminder that we must do more to ensure that our criminal justice system lives up to the promise of fair and impartial justice, equal treatment, and dignity for all.
‘We also cannot ignore the fact that fatal encounters with law enforcement have disparately impacted Black and Brown people.’
Schools in Memphis are canceling all after-school activities in the ‘interest of public safety’ with a showcase being postponed for a week in anticipation of the fallout of the footage release.
Police departments in cities around the nation like Austin, Los Angeles, and Washington DC are all preparing for possible unrest after the release of the footage.