People attend a candlelight vigil in memory of Tyre Nichols at the Tobey Skate Park on January 26, 2023, in Memphis, Tennessee. | Scott Olson/Getty Images
Tyre Nichols was killed after he was brutally beaten by Memphis police officers on the evening of January 7. Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man, was pulled over for what police said was reckless driving. Three days later, he died from his injuries.
It’s not the first time that police have turned a traffic stop into a deadly altercation. Five police officers, all of whom are Black, have been fired for their actions toward Nichols. They have each been charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault, two charges of aggravated kidnapping, two charges of official misconduct, and one charge of official oppression. (A sixth police officer has been suspended in connection to the case.) If found guilty, the five former officers each face up to 60 years in prison for the murder charge alone.
The city of Memphis released footage from police body cameras and street cameras that showed the officers repeatedly punching, kicking, and hitting Nichols with a baton — sometimes while he was restrained on the ground.
The fatal beating has sparked nationwide protests and revived calls for police reform in Congress.
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