Today (Feb. 7), the Memphis City Council is holding its first public meeting since the gut-wrenching body camera footage of the police-involved beating that led to the death of Tyre Nichols was released. The city’s police chief and fire chief will be present to address public safety proposals and departmental reforms.
According to CNN, 11 proposals will be introduced by council members of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. One topic includes an ordinance to require police only make traffic stops with marked cars. As previously reported by REVOLT, several Memphis Police Department officers are accused of blocking Nichols’ car using unmarked cop vehicles and then quickly and aggressively bombarding him with commands as their weapons were drawn — likely leaving him confused and frightened. From there, Nichols was given over 70 contradictory instructions in under 15 minutes by the group of law enforcement officials meant to protect and serve.
Other proposals include an ordinance to clarify “appropriate” ways of conducting traffic stops; a procedure for an independent review of police training; a civilian law enforcement review board and more. Chairman Martavius Jones will lead the council’s 13 members during today’s meeting. The group of Memphis police officers who were seen on camera severely beating Nichols as he was restrained and defenseless during what was supposed to be a simple traffic stop, also reportedly left him without medical assistance for over 20 minutes after the assault. The victim died three days later from injuries sustained at the hands of the cops. Since the deadly Jan. 7, 2023 attack, five of the officers involved have been fired and charged with second-degree murder. They will appear in court on Feb. 17.
CNN added that the officers involved initially reported that Nichols “started to fight” with them and even tried to grab one of their weapons during the altercation, but that accusation was later proven to be false once the footage was reviewed. A sixth cop was also fired but not yet charged, and a seventh was put on leave. Two EMTs have also been suspended for failing to render emergency care.