Tyre Nichols – live: Memphis police chief urges calm ahead of bodycam release of ‘heinous, inhumane’ beating

The Memphis police chief is calling for calm ahead of the release of bodycam footage from the “heinous, reckless and inhumane” death of Tyre Nichols – as she warned it will reveal how five police officers failed the Black man, his family and their community and showed a “disregard for basic human rights”.

Nichols, 29, was allegedly violenty beaten by five officers during a traffic stop on 7 January. He died three days later in hospital.

An independent autopsy released by his family has since revealed he suffered “extensive bleeding” before his death.

The family has reviewed bodycam footage from the incident and Memphis police plan to release it to the public in the coming days.

Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis said in a press conference on Wednesday evening that people will then “see this for yourselves” how the officers’ actions were “a failing of basic humanity towards another individual”.

“I expect you to feel what the Nichols family feels. I expect you to feel outraged by the disregard for basic human rights as our police officers have taken an oath to do the opposite of what transpired on the video,” she said.

Key Points

ICYMI: Another Black man killed by police and his mother wants answers

11:03 , Graeme Massie

There is so much that is uniquely appalling about the death of the young father after the traffic stop on 7 January, a few hundred metres from home.

One is that yet another child has been left without a father.

And just as the last desperate words of both Eric Garner, killed by police in New York City, and George Floyd, murdered by a police officer in Minneapolis, were “I can’t breathe”, Tyre’s equally helpless confusion was captured in his: “What did I do wrong?”

Yet as Crump and his fellow attorney, Antonio Romanucci, underscored as they and the family of the young man spoke to the media in Tennessee on Monday, what is equally awful is how so many of these police killings echo one another.

They are the same but different and yet they keep happening.

Read more from Andrew Buncombe’s full piece for Independent Voices.

‘The video is appalling, it is deplorable’: Another Black man killed by police

Once again, a community scarred by police violence demands video evidence of what occurred

09:05 , Graeme Massie

After the shock death of Tyre Nichols, Memphis community members want police body camera video of what happened during a fatal January traffic stop.

However, despite previous promises to release the video, city officials are now equivocating.

“Transparency remains a priority in this incident, and the premature release could adversely impact the criminal investigation and the judicial process,” police chief Cerelyn Davis said in a release. “We are working with the District Attorney’s Office to determine the appropriate time to release video recording publicly.”

Abe Asher reports.

When will the Tyre Nichols body camera footage be released?

Funeral details for Tyre Nichols released

07:01 , Graeme Massie

Civil rights activist Al Sharpton will deliver the eulogy at the funeral of Tyre Nichols on 1 February at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church in Memphis, Tennessee.

The funeral will be open to the public the family has announced.

“The universe is working for my brother, and I love it,” Keyana Dixon, Nichols’s older sister, told The Commercial Appeal. “His light will outshine the dark way he left us.”

The Tyre Nichols arrest video to be made public on Friday

05:01 , Graeme Massie

The Tennessee Sheriff’s Association wrote to the National Sheriffs Association (NSA) notifying law enforcement agencies that videos of the Tyre Nichols arrest are set to be made public on Friday, according to WTVF.

Nichols died on 10 January 10, following a brutal confrontation with Memphis Police on 7 January and law enforcement are now warning its release may spark public disorder.

An independent autopsy for the family concluded that he suffered “extensive bleeding caused by a severe beating.”

“Due to the nature of the video’s contents it is believed it may spark responses outside of the traditional protest. There is a public safety risk potential to communities and peace officers expanding outside of the Shelby County (Memphis) TN. area,” the letter stated.

Past beating allegations against fired officer emerge

02:30 , Graeme Massie

In the wake of the death of 29-year-old Tennessee father Tyre Nichols after a traffic stop, five officers of the Memphis Police Department have been removed from their posts. One of them has now been revealed to have been sued for allegedly beating a prison inmate unconscious in 2016.

The officers stand accused of beating Mr Nichols so severely on 7 January that he died in hospital three days later.

Officer Demetrius Haley was one of three corrections officers accused in an April 2016 lawsuit filed in a US District Court in Tennessee to have assaulted inmate Cordarlrius Sledge, who was imprisoned in Shelby County at the time.

Sledge filed the lawsuit without an attorney, and it was dismissed in 2018 by a judge who found that he didn’t correctly serve one of the defendants with a summons, NBC News reported.

The judge, Thomas Anderson, didn’t comment on the allegations put forward by Sledge when he dismissed the suit on 2 March 2018.

The Independent’s Gustaf Kilander has more:

Officer fired over Tyre Nichols death was sued for beating prison inmate unconscious

US Attorney promises complete and thorough civil rights investigation

00:15 , Graeme Massie

Mr Ritz, the US Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee, promised a complete and thorough civil rights investigation into Tyre Nichols investigation at Wednesday’s press conference.

He stated that he had met with Nichols family this week and promised to bring them justice where needed.

However, he cautioned that the investigation “will take some time”.

On the topic of when the body camera video will be released, Mr Ritz said that will be up to state and local authorities.

Autopsy shows Tyre Nichols was severely beaten before death, family lawyers say

Wednesday 25 January 2023 21:02 , Graeme Massie

The Shelby County medical examiner’s office has not yet released an official cause of death in the highly controversial case. But the family of the 29-year-old from Memphis hired its own forensic pathologist to review the death.

Preliminary findings from the review found that Nichols “suffered extensive bleeding caused by a severe beating,” family attorneys Benjamin Crump and Antonio Romanucci said on Tuesday.

Memphis Police Force Investigation (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
Memphis Police Force Investigation (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Memphis Fire Department fires two in wake of Tyre Nichols death

Wednesday 25 January 2023 20:22 , Graeme Massie

MPD says two employees were “relieved of duty” and an internal investigation is underway in connection with the death of the Black man days after he was stopped by police on 7 January.

Memphis Fire Department spokesperson Qwanesha Ward told NPR that the unidentified employees were “involved in the initial patient care” of Nichols.

“This is an ongoing investigation, and we cannot comment further at this time,” Ms Ward said.

In this photo provided by WREG, Tyre Nichols' stepfather Rodney Wells, right, holds a photo of Nichols in the hospital after his arrest, during a protest in Memphis, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (AP)
In this photo provided by WREG, Tyre Nichols' stepfather Rodney Wells, right, holds a photo of Nichols in the hospital after his arrest, during a protest in Memphis, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (AP)

US Attorney to speak on investigation

Wednesday 25 January 2023 15:18 , Megan Sheets

US Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee Kevin G Ritz is set speak about the Tyre Nichols investigation in a few minutes.

His remarks are set to begin at 9.30am local time (10.30am ET).

Officer fired over Tyre Nichols death was accused of brutally beating prison inmate in 2016

Wednesday 25 January 2023 12:29 , Megan Sheets

One of five Memphis police officers who were fired over the alleged beating death of Tyre Nichols had been accused of beating a prison inmate unconscious years earlier, according to a federal civil rights complaint.

The complaint was filed against former officer Demetrius Haley in April 2016 in Tennessee’s US District Court by Cordarlrius Sledge, NBC News reported.

Mr Sledge accused Mr Haley of being among three corrections officers who assaulted him while he behind bars at the Shelby County Division of Corrections in May 2015.

Mr Sledge said the officers searched his cell and baselessly accused him of flushing contraband before attacking him.

He claimed Mr Haley and another officer punched him in the face before the third officer slammed him into a sink. He woke up later in a hospital bed at the facility.

The suit was dismissed in 2018 after a judge ruled Mr Sledge - who filed the complaint without a lawyer - did not properly serve a summons to one of the defendants.

This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Demetrius Haley. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Demetrius Haley. (AP)

Tyre Nichols investigation leads to firings and suspensions across multiple Memphis departments

Wednesday 25 January 2023 07:59 , Josh Marcus

Two Memphis Fire Department employees have been removed from duty while the agency conducts an investigation into the death of a Black man after a violent arrest that led to the firing of five police officers.

The employees were involved in the initial patient care of Tyre Nichols, the Memphis Fire Department said in a statement.

Memphis police officers beat Nichols on Jan. 7 for three minutes, treating him like “a human piñata” in a “savage” encounter reminiscent of the infamous 1991 police beating of Los Angeles motorist Rodney King, attorneys for his family said Monday after the family saw police video.

More details in our full story.

2 fire dep't employees removed amid investigation into death

Why the Tyre Nichols case is bringing back memories of Rodney King

Wednesday 25 January 2023 05:00 , Josh Marcus

Family members, activists, and community residents are comparing a violent January police stop to the infamous Rodney King beating of 1991.

Gustaf Kilander has the details you need to know about the Tyre Nichols case in Memphis.

‘Reminded us of Rodney King’: Everything we know about the death of Tyre Nichols

When will the Tyre Nichols body camera footage be released and why is it taking so long?

Wednesday 25 January 2023 02:00 , Josh Marcus

Tyre Nichols, 29, died in Memphis, Tennessee on January 10 just three days after being arrested by members of the city’s police department. Now, two weeks later, residents are still waiting to see the body camera footage of the arrest that seemingly led to the death.

Mr Nichols was initially pulled over for reckless driving on January 7 and allegedly fled from police. He complained of difficulty breathing shortly after police confronted him and was taken to an area hospital, where he died.

The five officers involved in Mr Nichols’ arrest were fired last week, which civil rights advocates heralded as a step towards justice for Mr Nichols.

But those advocates believe there is still a long way to go before justice is fully served in the death of another Black American following a confrontation with police.

Abe Asher has the details.

When will the Tyre Nichols body camera footage be released?

Video: ‘This is about transparency'

Wednesday 25 January 2023 01:00 , Josh Marcus

Community members gathered on Tuesday for a meeting of the Memphis city council, using the forum to demand transparency, including body camera footage, of the police stop that left Tyre Nichols in critical condition and likely killed him.

“This is about transparency and dammit we go have it,” one community activist said.

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Who are the police officers who stopped Tyre Nichols?

Wednesday 25 January 2023 00:00 , Josh Marcus

The city of Memphis has fired five police officers involved in the violent and eventually fatal traffic stop of Tyre Nichols.

Their names are as follows: Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr and Justin Smith

Memphis officials condemned the officers, who were fired on Friday evening.

“The egregious nature of this incident is not a reflection of the good work that our officers perform, with integrity, every day,” Memphis police chief Cerelyn Davis told the New York Times.

‘Firing these officers is not enough,’ Al Sharpton says

Tuesday 24 January 2023 23:00 , Josh Marcus

Civil rights activist Al Sharpton says officials need to go further than their decision Friday to fire five Memphis police officers involved in the violent traffic stop that resulted in Tyre Nichols’s death.“Firing these officers for misconduct is not enough,” Mr Sharpton said in a statement on Tuesday. “Justice will only be served when all five are charged with killing Tyre Nichols for the simple act of driving while Black.”

Mr Sharpton added that it didn’t matter that the five officers who stopped Nichols were themselves Black.

“These officers should not be allowed to hide their deeds behind their Blackness,” the activist said.

Tyre Nichols suffered ‘extensive bleeding,’ autopsy shows

Tuesday 24 January 2023 22:00 , Josh Marcus

A preliminary independent autospy showed Tyre Nichols suffered “extensive bleeding” during a violent police stop this month, after which the 29-year-old eventually died.

“We can state that preliminary findings indicate Tyre suffered extensive bleeding caused by a severe beating, and that his observed injuries are consistent with what the family and attorneys witnessed on the video of his fatal encounter with police on January 7, 2023,” attorneys for his family wrote in a statement on Tuesday, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports.

The attorneys also described the injuries as a result of the “unadulterated...beating of [Nichols] for three minutes,” which they compared to the infamous 1991 beating of Rodney King by Los Angeles police.

Family shares touching video of Tyre Nichols skateboarding

Tuesday 24 January 2023 21:00 , Josh Marcus

The Nichols family wants their son Tyre to be remembered as more than someone who died during a violent police stop.

On Monday, they shared a video of Nichols doing what he loved most, skateboarding, through their attorney.

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The family described him as a doting son.

“My son, nobody is perfect, nobody, but he was damn near,” his mother RowVaugn Wells said at a recent press conference. “My son, he came here right before the pandemic. He got stuck here because we shut the world down, but he was OK with it, you know why? Because he was with his mother. My son loved me to death.”

Two firefighters taken off duty as part of Tyre Nichols probe

Tuesday 24 January 2023 20:00 , Josh Marcus

Two Memphis firefighters were “relieved of duty” pending an internal investigation into their role in the Tyre Nichols case, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports.

The news of their suspension follows the announcement on Friday that five Memphis police officers involved in the violent January arrest of Nichols were fired.

Video of deadly traffic stop to be released after five Memphis police officers fired

Memphis’s long record of police violence, by the numbers

Tuesday 24 January 2023 19:00 , Josh Marcus

The case of Tyre Nichols is reminding many Memphis residents of the city police department’s long history of violence against people of colour.

In Memphis, Black people are killed at a rate 1.5 times higher than their white counterparts, according to data from Mapping Police Violence.

Everything we know about the Tyre Nichols case

Tuesday 24 January 2023 18:04 , Gustaf Kilander

A29-year-old father died in hospital several days after he was taken into custody by police during a traffic stop.

Now five officers at the Memphis Police Department have been removed from their posts.

This is everything we know so far about the death of Tyre Nichols.

‘Reminded us of Rodney King’: Everything we know about the death of Tyre Nichols

Two Memphis firefighters placed on leave over Tyre Nichols traffic stop

Tuesday 24 January 2023 13:22 , Megan Sheets

Two Memphis firefighters are now under investigation over their involvement in the initial care of Tyre Nichols following his fateful 7 January traffic stop.

The firefighters have been “relieved of duty” pending the outcome of the internal probe, department spokesperson Qwanesha Ward announced Monday.

Ms Ward declined to elaborate on whether the firefighters were suspended or dismissed, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

It comes after five police officers were fired over their involvement in the traffic stop.

Body camera video of the confrontation is expected to be released this week.

A 29-year-old father died after a traffic stop. The family lawyer says the footage ‘reminded us of Rodney King’

Tuesday 24 January 2023 13:03 , Graeme Massie

Five Memphis officers have been fired after violating multiple department policies in the death of Tyre Nichols as criminal and civil rights investigations are launched.

Gustaf Kilander has the details.

‘Reminded us of Rodney King’: Everything we know about the death of Tyre Nichols

Ben Crump comments on fired black police officers

Tuesday 24 January 2023 10:01 , Graeme Massie

“It is not the race of the police officer that is the determining factor of the amount of force, it is the race of the citizen,” Mr Crump said. on Monday. “...It is about the Black and brown citizens that get dealt excessive force from the police officers, whether they are Black, white or brown, and it has to stop.”

In this photo provided by WREG, Tyre Nichols' stepfather Rodney Wells, right, holds a photo of Nichols in the hospital after his arrest, during a protest in Memphis, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (AP)
In this photo provided by WREG, Tyre Nichols' stepfather Rodney Wells, right, holds a photo of Nichols in the hospital after his arrest, during a protest in Memphis, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. (AP)

MPD fires five officers over death of Tyre Nichols

Tuesday 24 January 2023 07:56 , Graeme Massie

Five Memphis police officers fired after death of Tyre Nichols

Tuesday 24 January 2023 06:30 , Graeme Massie

MPD determined the officers violated multiple policies, including excessive use of force, duty to intervene and duty to render aid.

This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Desmond Mills, Jr. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Desmond Mills, Jr. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Emmitt Martin III. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Emmitt Martin III. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Justin Smith. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Justin Smith. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Demetrius Haley. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Demetrius Haley. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Tadarrius Bean. (AP)
This image provided by the Memphis Police Department shows officer Tadarrius Bean. (AP)

Skateboarders

Tuesday 24 January 2023 05:05 , Graeme Massie

Skateboarders skate in front of Memphis city hall to remember Tyre Nichols, who died after being beaten by Memphis police officers, five of whom have been fired. Tyre was a member of the skateboarding community, and they gathered at the request of Tyre’s family to honour him.

 (AP)
(AP)
 (AP)
(AP)

Lawyer Ben Crump vows to fight for Tyre Nichols

Tuesday 24 January 2023 03:35 , Graeme Massie

“This is who Tyre Nichols was — a talented and dedicated skateboarder with SO much life left to live… He didn’t deserve to be tragically taken from his family and community! We will continue to fight for accountability for you Tyre!” tweeted Mr Crump on Monday.

Family say Tyre Nichols was beaten ‘like a human piñata’ in Memphis police ‘murder’

Tuesday 24 January 2023 02:01 , Graeme Massie

High-profile attorney Ben Crump called bodycam footage of his death “appalling, deplorable and heinous.”

Bevan Hurley has the story.

Family say Tyre Nichols was beaten ‘like a human piñata’ in Memphis police ‘murder’

Who was Rodney King?

Tuesday 24 January 2023 00:59 , Graeme Massie

MPD calls death of Tyre Nichols after interaction with officers ‘egregious’

Monday 23 January 2023 23:02 , Graeme Massie

Tyre Nichols live blog

Monday 23 January 2023 21:36 , Graeme Massie

This is a live blog covering the death of Memphis man Tyre Nichols after he was arrested and beaten by police in the city.

More follows.