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A Memphis police officer took and shared photo of bloodied Tyre Nichols immediately following beating, state oversight report claims

Business Insider logo Business Insider 2/8/2023 (Erin Snodgrass,Haven Orecchio-Egresitz)
People protest in Memphis following the release of video showing the deadly encounter between police and Tyre Nichols Shameka Wilson for Insider © Shameka Wilson for Insider People protest in Memphis following the release of video showing the deadly encounter between police and Tyre Nichols Shameka Wilson for Insider
  • A Memphis police officer reportedly took and shared photos of Tyre Nichols following his beating.
  • Five officers have been charged in Nichols' death.
  • Seven more officers are under investigation. 

One of the Memphis police officers charged in the death of Tyre Nichols took and texted a photo of the bloodied and bruised 29-year-old following the brutal beating as he sat handcuffed and propped up against a cruiser, according to police documents obtained by Insider. 

Former officer Demetrius Haley admitted to sharing a photo of Nichols with at least five people, including two other officers, a civilian employee at the department, and a female acquaintance; a sixth person also obtained the photo, according to the records. 

Street camera footage from the scene appears to show Haley taking cellphone photos of Nichols as he sat slumped against a police car. 

Haley said he used his personal cell phone to take the photographs while he stood in front of Nichols who was "obviously injured" and handcuffed, the documents said.

On the evening of January 7, Memphis police officers stopped Nichols on suspicion of "reckless driving," though police officials have since said they haven't found evidence that Nichols was driving erratically. An initial confrontation between Nichols and several officers ensued as they pulled him out of his vehicle and pushed him to the ground. 

A second confrontation occurred after Nichols got up and ran away as an officer tried to Tase him. Body-camera footage showed several officers beating Nichols while he was on the ground. Nichols died three days after the traffic stop.

The Memphis Police Department submitted documents for the five officers charged in the beating, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr., Justin Smith, Haley, and Tadarrius Bean, to the Tennessee Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission last month as part of an effort to decertify the officers who have since been charged with second-degree murder, according to The New York Times.

Six cops in total have been fired as a result of the beating, and seven more officers with the department are facing an internal investigation and possible discipline, the City of Memphis announced Tuesday.

The Memphis Police Department declined to comment.


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