As Memphis reckons with Tyre Nichols’s death, police shutter unit involved in case

The Memphis police shut down the Scorpion unit, which the police chief had defended a day earlier

Saturday - 28/01/2023 20:18 Author: Editors Desk Source: The Washington Post

Family and friends reminisced about Tyre Nichols, a joyful young man who died on Jan. 10 after a violent arrest by Memphis police three days prior. (Video: Hadley Green/The Washington Post)

Fallout from the brutal Memphis police beating of Tyre Nichols continued Saturday, as the department shut down the specialized unit that had included the officers charged with second-degree murder in his death while a broadening web of investigations scrutinized additional local authorities.

In a reversal, the Memphis police announced Saturday that it was dismantling the Scorpion unit that had employed the five officers in the case. Only a day earlier, the Memphis police chief had defended the Scorpion unit, saying it “did good work” at combating crime but that this particular group of officers “went off the rails that night.”

Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man, was stopped while driving in early January by police officers with that unit.

Video footage released Friday evening captured what happened after, showing officers pummeling an unarmed Nichols, who cried out for his mother during the beating. In the aftermath, the videos show, officers conversed among themselves while a bloodied Nichols was left propped against a car, waiting minute after agonizing minute for an ambulance to arrive. It didn’t come until 22 minutes after the police said Nichols was in custody.

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 Keywords: Black Lives Matter

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