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One of the police officers accused of murdering Tire Nichols took photos of him covered in blood and texted them to several people

2023-02-08T05:08:07.760Z


The conduct of the five officers charged with second-degree murder was "clearly unprofessional," reveal new documents released Tuesday, offering the most detailed account to date of police brutality during the Memphis incident in January.


By Adrian Sainz, Travis Loller and Jonathan Mattise -

The Associated Press

One of the police officers charged with the brutal beating that killed Tire Nichols took and shared photos of the beaten and bloody young man, new documents released Tuesday reveal.

The documents are a scathing account of the "clearly unprofessional" conduct of the five officers involved in the beating of the young African-American man after a traffic stop in Memphis, Tennessee, in January.

Officer Demetrius Haley approached Nichols, who was lying leaning against a police vehicle, and took pictures of him that he later sent to other officers and an acquaintance, according to documents released by the Tennessee Peace Officer Training and Standards Commission.

“Her conduct on duty was unfair, clearly unprofessional and unbecoming of a public official serving under oath,” the Memphis Police Department wrote in requesting that Haley and the other officers be fired.

[Biden referred to the case of Tire Nichols and called for police reform]

Haley's attorney declined to comment, and legal representatives for the other four officers either declined to comment, or did not respond to requests from The Associated Press news agency.

All five police officers - Haley, Desmond Mills Jr., Tadarrius Bean, Justin Smith and Emmitt Martin III - have been fired and charged with second degree murder.

The new documents offer the most detailed account to date of the officers' actions.

Video of an interview they did with Tire Nichols in 2018 comes to light

Jan 29, 202300:41

Another officer was fired and a seventh was suspended as a result of the fatal beating that has sparked protests across the country and reignited intense public debate over police and racial brutality.

Up to 13 Memphis officers could be disciplined in Nichols' death, authorities said Tuesday.

The newly released documents are part of a petition by the Memphis Police Department to have

the five officers accused of murder be removed from office and barred from returning to law enforcement

.

Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn 'CJ' Davis signed each of the requests to de-badge officers.

Now-ex-cop Haley, who was driving an unmarked vehicle and wearing a black hoodie over his head, forced Nichols out of his car by yelling insults at him and then sprayed chemical spray into his eyes, according to the statement.

[Memphis police remove a seventh officer from his job for the brutal beating that took the life of Tire Nichols]

"He never told the driver the purpose of stopping the vehicle or that he was under arrest," he

said.

Haley was not wearing her body camera on when she pulled over Nichols, but was on the phone with someone who heard the incident.

Nichols fled from officers but was detained again a few blocks away.

At that moment, Haley kicked him in the torso while three other officers handcuffed him.

Other policemen kicked him in the face, hit him with their fists and a baton.

According to camera footage on a street, one of the officers appeared to quickly take a photo of Nichols with his phone while flashlights were being shone on him.

Cry for justice and tears at the funeral of Tire Nichols, who died after a beating by police officers with a dark past

Feb 1, 202302:01

"You and other officers were caught on body camera making unprofessional comments, laughing, bragging about your involvement (in the beating)," the charges against Mills, another of the officers, state.

"He admitted that he did not provide immediate medical assistance and that he moved away so as not to be contaminated by the irritating chemical spray," they add.

Mills is also accused of not giving an accurate version of events to Nichols' mother.

The officer claimed the youth tried to wrest the gun from his holster as he was forced out of the vehicle, but video evidence does not support that claim, according to the documents.

[Punching, kicking and batoning: 5 chilling moments from the video of the fatal police beating of Tire Nichols]

Audio from a body camera

did not capture Nichols swearing or threatening, instead appearing calm and polite

in his exchanges with officers.

Agent Martin, for his part, insulted him and threatened to knock him out while ordering him to put his arm behind his back.

Martin did not disclose in a required form that he punched Nichols in the face and kicked him.

In his subsequent statement, he assured investigators that he gave her "blows to the body," the documents detail.

In one of the recordings it is seen how he punched the young man five times while two agents held him by the arms and kicked him repeatedly.

Police found Martin's oral and written statements misleading, according to the charges.

RowVaughn Wells and Rodney Wells, parents of Tire Nichols, on Capitol Hill in Washington on February 7, 2023. J. Scott Applewhite / AP

A hearing officer wrote that Officer Justin Smith “admitted that he struck an unarmed, nonviolent subject with a clenched fist two or three times in the face because neither you nor your partner could handcuff him.

He sprayed the subject with his chemical irritant spray and also held the individual's arm while other officers kicked, punched and pepper sprayed him multiple times.”

Smith defended his conduct in a letter included in his file, stating that Nichols was "violent and refused to comply."

Officer Bean, for his part, is accused of holding Nichols by the arm while another officer sprayed pepper spray and hit him with a baton.

The prosecution also maintains that his indifference to the young man's anguish during the beating was denounced by a civilian who recorded a video of the incident.

Nichols died three days after the attack.

Her family attended the State of the Union address Tuesday as a guest of first lady Jill Biden.

Source: telemundo

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