5 Memphis officers open fire on traffic stop that turns deadly

NASHVILLE — Five Memphis police officers were fired Friday after they were found to have used excessive force and failed to intervene or render aid during a traffic stop this month involving a 29-year-old black man who died at the hospital three days later. , officials said.

The Memphis Police Department’s internal investigation into the shooting resulted in city restrictions on the release of police body camera footage clarifying how Dyer Nichols ended up in critical condition at the hospital. Arrested on 7th January.

The case involved activists and Mr. It has sparked outrage among Nichols’ family and sparked state and federal investigations. Nevertheless, the circumstances of the stoppage and Mr. Few details have been released about the conflicts that preceded Nichols’ death. His family Mr. Nichols shared a photo showing her in a hospital bed, unconscious, her face bruised and swollen.

“The Memphis Police Department is committed to protecting and protecting the rights of every citizen in our city,” said Police Chief Cherilyn Davis. said in a statement The shootings were announced Friday evening. “The severity of this incident is no reflection on the good work our officers do with integrity every day.”

Mr. Nicholas was stopped by officers. Police, in an initial report, said a “confrontation occurred” when officers approached his vehicle and Mr. Nichols ran away. “Another confrontation” ensued as officers arrested him.

Mr. Nicholas complained of shortness of breath and an ambulance was called to take him to the hospital, officials said. Died on 10 Jan.

On Friday, the police department said it had completed a “thorough review of the circumstances surrounding the incident” and found officers violated its policies on use of excessive force, duty to intervene and duty to render aid.

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Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr. and Justin Smith, five officers were fired. All of the officers, who are black, joined the department between 2017 and 2020.

“This is the first step towards justice for Dyer and his family,” said Mr. Ben Crump and Antonio Romanucci, attorneys representing Nichols’ family, said in a statement Friday. “They must also be held accountable for robbing this man of his life and his father’s son.”

Mr. While Nichols was in the hospital, local prosecutors called the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. On Wednesday, federal prosecutors in Memphis made the announcement A civil rights hearing was opened.

After the investigation of the police department, Mr. City officials this week promised to release the body camera footage after Nichols’ family had a chance to see it, which is expected to happen early next week.

“We take departmental violations very seriously, and while we must complete the investigative process, ensuring swift justice is our priority,” Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said in a statement. “We want citizens to know that we are prepared to take immediate and appropriate action based on what the findings determine.”

All five officials could not immediately be reached for comment on Friday.

The Memphis Police Association, the union representing the city’s officers, declined to comment on the shooting. “The citizens of Memphis and, most importantly, the family of Mr. Nichols, deserve to know a complete account of the events that led to his death” and what may have contributed to it, union Lt. Essica Cage-Rosario said in a statement released Friday by the president of the union.

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Blue Bohra Contributed report.

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