Memphis, a city in the United States, has seen an increase in protests against the brutal killing of Tyre Nichols by the US police, a young Black man. The gruesome killing triggered Protesters to march in flocks to the streets, chanting and blaming the US government for the rising violence and brutality against the Black community, declaring that the system is “murdering us.”
Following the explosive video, which Memphis’ police commissioner warned contained “acts that defy humanity,” large crowds flocked to the streets of major cities.
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According to a protester, every night seems scary, whenever they go around Memphis. In the meantime, Saturday’s snowballing protests led to the dissolution of the Memphis police unit that was involved in Tyre Nichols’ fatal beating. After meeting with Nichols’ family, community leaders, and other officers, the police department announced in a statement that it would permanently deactivate the SCORPION unit.
The SCORPION unit, which has 40 officers, was established in November 2021 to combat “violent crime.” As she referred to the dismissal of the unit that attacked Nichols, Memphis protest organizer Amber Sherman stated, “This is only a first step, and other, similar specialized units also need to be eliminated.” That’s a good move to end that unit alone. The Black officers were all let go from the police department last week.
“The video clearly captures officers dragging Nichols from the driver’s seat of his car while he yells, “Damn, I didn’t do anything.” The officers pursued him and then repeatedly yelled, “Mooooom!” for his mother’s assistance. while he fought officers. In Nichols’ death, the officers were accused of second-degree murder, assault, kidnapping, official misconduct, and oppression. “I’m going to pray for you and your families because at the end of the day, this shouldn’t have happened,” Nichols’ mother, RowVaughn Wells, said at the news conference. “To the five police officers that brutally murdered my son, you also disgraced your own families when you did this.”
Nichols’s death is a well-known example of police officers using excessive force and the latest face of a US racial injustice movement that was sparked by the murder of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis in 2020.