Prosecutor to review all cases connected to five former Memphis officers charged in death of Tyre Nichols

CNN Newsource Pristine Villarreal

(CNN) — The Shelby County district attorney’s office will review all previous cases involving the five former Memphis police officers charged in the death of Tyre Nichols, the county prosecutor said.

“The office will review all prior cases — closed and pending,” Shelby County District Attorney Steven Mulroy said in a statement.

It is unknown how many cases this will involve.

“This is just the beginning,” Erica Williams, the spokeswoman for Mulroy, told CNN. “This involves any criminal case that [the officers] were involved in. It is any case where there were criminal charges that were brought by the DA anytime since they became officers.”

The five Black former officers are due to be arraigned February 17 after they were fired January 20 in connection with Nichols’ death, then indicted on seven counts each, including second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping with bodily injury, aggravated kidnapping in possession of a deadly weapon, official misconduct and official oppression, Mulroy announced January 27.

The January release of video of Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man, being repeatedly punched and kicked by police shook a nation long accustomed to videos of police brutality — especially against people of color.

Nichols died in a hospital days after the beating.

All five officers — Demetrius Haley, Tadarrius Bean, Emmitt Martin III, Justin Smith, and Desmond Mills Jr. — also were internally charged with violating the department’s policies on personal conduct, neglect of duty, excessive or unnecessary force and use of body-worn cameras, according to internal police documents. The charges are not criminal in nature.

Several of the fired officers had received written reprimands or short suspensions for violating policies during their time with the department, personnel files show.

Haley was involved in a November 2021 incident where another officer received a sustained complaint for “excessive/unnecessary force” after a female suspect suffered a dislocated shoulder. Haley didn’t face a departmental charge for force but was reprimanded for failing to document his role in the detention.

Mills received a reprimand in 2019 for not filing a form after the use of physical force against a suspect. Mills used force to take the woman “to the ground so that she could be handcuffed,” according to the summary of his hearing.

While four officers had policy violations, Bean had no written reprimands in the files reviewed by CNN.

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