MEMPHIS, Tennessee — Fueled by newly released body camera footage showing the brutal police beating of Tyre Nichols, hundreds of peaceful demonstrators marched Saturday afternoon to demand justice, accountability, and justice. He called for police reform.
Many in the crowd expressed their dissatisfaction with the long history of police violence against civilians, corruption, and the need to disband several tactical units under the police force.
“Having grown up here, this is nothing new to us. I’m used to getting into trouble with the police in this city.”
Body camera footage of Nichols being brutally beaten by Memphis police on Jan. 7 was released Friday night, igniting protests across the country, and he died three days later.
Five police officers have been dismissed from the department and charged with second-degree murder. City officials on Saturday announced the dissolution of his SCORPION unit a year ago.
City officials on Saturday announced that the tactical unit Scorpion, which represents a street crime operation to restore peace in our neighborhood, would be disbanded, according to organizer Hunter Demster. Responds to people’s demands.
The famous anti-violence unit was launched in November 2021, when the city’s murder rate was soaring and the community was calling for action.
“In the process of listening intently to Tire Nichols’ family, community leaders, and unrelated officers who have done quality work on the mission, permanently disabling the SCORPION unit is in everyone’s best interests. is,” the department said in a statement on Saturday.
Demster said the decision was great, but it wasn’t enough, and argued that the bureau’s gang and crime task force should also be removed.
“As a long-term goal, we intend to sustain actions to close commerce and roads until real policies are passed,” he said. “If a group comes to a civic center for an event, we close it. If the president of the United States is driving down the street, we close down the street.”
He added that he wants people to stop getting killed at the hands of the police, in addition to massive police reform.
Many demonstrators said they were fed up with unjust and aggressive police with a long local history of corruption.
In the case of Memphis protester Joshua Lewis, 18, he said he was not surprised by the actions of police officers caught on camera beating Nichols.
“The tire video made me angry, but I feel like this is normal[in Memphis]and it’s time for a change. We’ve been trying to change that for years.” He said, adding that it starts with the police and ends with city hall.
“We’re all exhausted by Memphis police corruption and the death of Tyre Nichols. After watching the video, we have more questions and need answers,” said demonstrator Rachel Spriggs, 38. said.
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/nbcblk/demonstrations-calls-police-reforms-flood-memphis-rcna68040 Demonstrations, calls for police reform flood Memphis