Memphis disbands the SCORPION Unit involved in the murder of Tyre Nichols
The Memphis police department has disbanded the SCORPION unit, designed to fight violent crime in areas with high crime rates. This comes after members of the unit were involved in the murder of Tyre Nichols.
The release is causing an uproar and charges of a cover-up.
Officer Preston Hemphill was relieved of his duties but he has not yet been charged with second-degree murder like the others, all of whom are Black.
“The news today from Memphis officials that Officer Preston Hemphill was reportedly relieved of duty weeks ago, but not yet terminated or charged, is extremely disappointing. Why is his identity and his role in Tyre’s death now coming to light? We have asked from the beginning that the Memphis Police Department be transparent with the family and the community – this news seems to indicate that they haven’t risen to the occasion. It certainly begs the question why the White officer involved in this brutal attack was shielded and protected from the public eye, and to date, from sufficient discipline,” the Nichols family said in a statement.
In a statement issued on January 28, the police department said it was in its best interest to deactivate the SCORPION Unit permanently.
An overhead video showed officers kicking and punching Nichols, which led to his death three days after entering the hospital.