A grand jury indicted five former police officers with murder and other charges related to Tire Nichols’ death.
America president joe biden Calls for any peaceful protests following Thursday’s allegations.
Nichols, 29, died in hospital three days later Confrontation during traffic stop in Memphis, USA, TennesseeJanuary 7th.
The father of one of the men was arrested after being pulled over for reckless driving and then allegedly beaten by officers for three minutes, police said.
Five black officers involved in the arrest were fired after a police investigation found that they used excessive force or failed to intervene and help him.
Officials are expected to release body camera footage of the incident Friday night.
After the footage was released, Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis asked for calm.
“I hope you feel what the Nichols family felt,” she said. “I want you to be outraged by the disregard for basic human rights.”
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director David Rausch said at a news conference that he was sickened by what he saw in the police body camera video.
“What’s going on here doesn’t reflect proper policing at all,” he said. “It’s wrong. It’s a crime.”
Meanwhile, District Attorney Steve Mulroy said at a news conference on Thursday that an “argument” ensued after Mr Nichols was pulled over in his car He sprayed pepper spray.
Mr Nichols fled on foot.
Mr Mulroy added: “Mr Nichols was involved in another altercation at a nearby location and Mr Nichols was seriously injured.”
The Memphis Police Department’s initial statement on the death said an ambulance was called after Mr. Nichols was taken to the hospital in critical condition after he “complained of shortness of breath.”
Mr Mulroy said he would not comment on the legality of the original traffic stop.
He said the investigation would continue and that additional charges could not be ruled out.
Mr Mulroy added that the five officers were charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping and official misconduct.
The Memphis Police Department identified them as Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills, Jr and Justin Smith, all black and between the ages of 24 and 32.
Each officer served in the department for about two and a half to five years and was fired last Saturday.
The former official could not be reached for comment.
Blake Ballin, an attorney representing Mills, said at a news conference that the former police officer was “shocked to find out that he had been charged with a crime.”
Ballin attended the meeting, along with William Massey representing Martin.Both lawyers said they had not seen the video
will be released on Friday and are still developing their defense. Their clients each posted bail and will be released Thursday, they said.
Both former officials intend to plead not guilty, their attorneys said.
Meanwhile, two Memphis Fire Department employees involved in the response have also been relieved of duty while the investigation is underway, a department spokesman said earlier this week.
Second-degree murder would go a long way toward meeting public expectations
America has been here before.
A black man died at the hands of the police, and the brutal images were captured on camera.
Rodney King and George Floyd are just two names that define lethal dysfunction in institutions that exist to protect and serve.
Now add Tire Nichols – 29, father and family man who worked for FedEx and loves to skateboard. “Nobody’s perfect,” said his mother, RowVaugn, “but he was pretty close.”
We’re told the events leading up to his death are contained in an hour-long video that captures a savage attack from multiple angles. A lawyer for the Nichols family said he was beaten “like a human piñata”.
A sense of dread reigned over the video, released Friday night, as it threatened to spark the kind of violent street protests that followed the killing of George Floyd in 2020.
In Memphis, they sensed the danger.
It explains why preparations for the release of the footage were carefully crafted around allegations against the officers involved.
Where the public is demanding accountability, charges for second-degree murder would go a long way in line with expectations.
A second-degree murder charge accuses police of intentionally killing Mr Nichols.
Is it any different that these five guys in uniform are black? Maybe. Time will tell if and how this elicits a broader public reaction.
President Biden described it this way: “Thiel’s death is a painful reminder that we must do more to ensure our criminal justice system lives up to our commitment to fair and equitable justice, equal treatment and dignity for all .
“We also cannot lose sight of the fact that fatal encounters with law enforcement affect black and brown people differently.”
It is a question of power and its abuse. The latest episode will be revealed soon – Memphis is ready.
“Anger is understandable, but violence is absolutely unacceptable,” President Biden said in a statement.
“Till’s death is a painful reminder that we must do more to ensure our criminal justice system lives up to our commitment to fair and impartial justice, equal treatment and the dignity of all people.”
Several recent incidents of police brutality against black people in the United States have sparked public outrage and calls for policing reform.
The Nichols family watched the police footage Monday with their attorney, Ben Crump, who compared the beating to the 1991 attack on Rodney King by Los Angeles police, which was recorded And sparked protests and police reform.
“He was defenseless the entire time. To those police officers, he was a human piñata,” Mr. Crump’s co-counsel, Antonio Romanucci, told reporters.
Mr Crump said the last words Nichols heard on the video were him calling out to his mother three times.