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Dismantling the US police unit involved in Nichols’ murder


The police department in Memphis, Tennessee, decided to dismantle a special unit to which five police officers belonged, who were accused of severe beating that led to the death of American driver Tyree Nichols, with more protests being organized in American cities a day after a shocking video of the attack was published, as the victim’s mother described. Her late son said that he “was kind-hearted,” and confirmed that her heart was wracked with pain as a result of his death.

The police department said in a statement that it suspended the Scorpion unit after the police chief spoke with members of the Nichols family, community leaders and other officials. A police spokesman confirmed that the five officers were members of the unit.

Video clips captured by police cameras and a camera installed on one of the utility towers showed that Nichols, 29, repeatedly shouted, “Mom,” while policemen kicked, punched, and beat him with a baton on January 7, after they stopped him for a traffic violation. Nichols was taken to hospital and died three days later of his injuries.

The police officers involved in the incident were charged with murder, assault, kidnapping, and more. All of them were dismissed from the police department.

Nichols’ family and US officials expressed their anger and grief, but urged the protesters to remain peaceful. The demonstrators responded to this call, and hundreds of protesters gathered in Washington Square Park in New York, before marching in Manhattan.

The victim’s mother, Rovon Wells, called for calm, but she turned to the two policemen who beat her son to death by saying: “You have caused disgrace to your families by doing this. My heart aches with pain… for a mother to know that her son was calling her in a time of need and I was not by his side.”

She added, “My son was kind-hearted. He was good. There is no perfect person, but he was close to that.”

“For far too long we have witnessed these incomprehensible actions by those who are sworn to protect us, and that must end,” said Senator Joe Manchin, adding: “This cannot be the America we are fighting for, and we must unite to deal with it.” that”.

Nichols’ death is the latest instance of US police using excessive force against blacks and other minorities. The most famous of these incidents was the killing of black American George Floyd in 2020, after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for more than nine minutes, and the incident sparked worldwide protests denouncing racial inequality.