MEMPHIS, Tennessee — Five former Memphis police officers have been arrested in connection with a traffic stop that preceded the death of a man, records show.
Former police officers Tadarius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Justin Smith, Emmitt Martin III, and Desmond Mills Jr. each have one count of second-degree murder, aggravated assault – conduct at a concert, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, and public affairs. He was charged with two counts of obstruction of execution. According to court records, he has one case of official repression.
Five are in custody at the Shelby County Jail.
The indictment comes less than a week after officers were fired and accused of violating agency policy when 29-year-old Tyre Nichols was arrested.
According to an initial police statement, Nichols stopped on January 7 and “complainted shortness of breath” after two “showdowns” with officers. He was hospitalized in critical condition and died on January 10. Memphis police have not explained what happened during the confrontation.
Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis called the incident “vicious, reckless and inhumane” in a video statement Wednesday.
Nichols’ family attorneys Ben Crump and Antonio Romanucci said: statement The announcement of the charges “gives us hope as we continue to seek justice for tires.”
“This young man lost his life in a particularly disgusting way. It shows that reform is a desperate need,” the statement said.
City releases Stop Friday video
A video of the stoppage will be released by the city after 6 p.m. Friday, Shelby County District Attorney General Steve Mulroy said Thursday afternoon.
Mulroy said the footage will likely be a combination of body camera video and surveillance video. Some of the videos will be edited, Mulroy said.
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director David Rausch said what was shown in the video was “utterly appalling.”
“Frankly, I am shocked. Disgusted by what I have seen and the extensive and thorough investigation,” Rausch said. “What happened here does not at all reflect proper policing. This was wrong. This was a crime.”
Crump and Romanucci saw the video earlier this week.Romanucci said it “showed the beating of pure…” [Nichols] Three minutes. “
Other officers under investigation
After an internal investigation, the five police officers involved in the stoppage were dismissed on January 20. The ministry cited multiple policy violations, including the use of force, failure to provide assistance, and mandates to intervene.
Two Memphis firefighters were also “released from duty” pending an internal investigation into their behavior after the stop, a fire department spokeswoman said.
Davis said Wednesday that more officers are being investigated as she conducts a “complete and independent review” of all specialized units in the department.
Federal investigation begins
The FBI and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation have opened an investigation into the traffic stoppage and death. Kevin G. Ritz, the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee, urged patience on Wednesday when the investigation will be completed.
Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson has called for a federal investigation into the Memphis Police Department. said it would be useful for
Funeral arrangements made for Nichols
Nichols’ funeral will be held Wednesday at the Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church. The funeral will be open to the public and Reverend Al Sharpton will deliver the eulogy.
A Candlelight Vigil will be held at a Memphis skatepark on January 26th. A wake and memorial service will also be held in California on Monday and his February 4th.
By: N’dea Yancey-Bragg, USA TODAY