Five Memphis Police Officers Fired and Indicted Following Violent Altercation with Tyre Nichols
On January 7th, in Memphis, Tennessee, five police officers of the Memphis Police Department were fired and later indicted on charges of second-degree murder, aggravated assault, kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression in connection to the death of Tyre Nichols. Video footage of the incident released by the City of Memphis on Friday evening shows the violent altercation after police stopped Nichols for an alleged traffic violation.
The body camera video, which lasts about 11 minutes, shows officers pulling Nichols out of his car at Raines and Ross roads as he yells, “I didn’t do anything.” The officer shouted at him, “Bitch, put your hands behind your back before I… I’m going to knock your ass the fuck out.” Another officer warns, “I’m gonna tase your ass.”
In the video, it can be seen that several police officers were affected by pepper spray that had been deployed by their colleagues. Footage captured on one of the body cameras showed that while Nichols was slumped next to the car, two officers allegedly pepper sprayed him and another one tased him.
The video also appears to show an officer shoving Nichols on the pavement with what appears to be his leg or knee. Nichols is then seized by the shoulders and struck in the face twice, subsequently being struck in the back with a suspected nightstick. Moments later, he was struck once more Two officers held Mr. Nichols while a third officer kicked him in the vicinity of his face at least twice. One officer yelled, “Hit him!” while another officer circled Mr. Nichols and struck him with a baton.
The video shows that officers kicked Nichols at least twice in the face, struck him at least three or four times with a baton in the upper body area, punched him at least four times in the face, punched him at least two more times in the upper body area and kicked him at least twice in his abdomen.
Mr. Nichols could be heard protesting to the officers as they tried to restrain him, claiming, “I didn’t do anything.” He is later pinned to the ground and an officer appears to kick him. The officers eventually drag him to a nearby car and prop him up in a seated position. At one point, Mr. Nichols collapsed onto the ground, and an officer supported him in a seated position against the car.
0. “Tyre Nichols Live Updates: Memphis Releases Body-Cam Video of Fatal Police Beating” The Wall Street Journal, 28 Jan. 2023, https://www.wsj.com/livecoverage/tyre-nichols-death-bodycam-video-memphis-police
1. “Memphis police video of Tyre Nichols beating shows he was hit several times” The Washington Post, 28 Jan. 2023, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2023/01/28/tyre-nichols-police-video-description/
2. “Video shows police kicking, pepper spraying, beating Tyre Nichols after traffic stop” Yahoo Sports, 28 Jan. 2023, https://sports.yahoo.com/amphtml/tyre-nichols-videos-released-000700138.html
3. “A brutal beating. Cries for his mom. 23-minute delay in aid. Here are the key revelations from the Tyre Nichols police videos” CNN, 28 Jan. 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/01/28/us/tyre-nichols-beating-video-takeaways/index.html