Photo: Jonas Roosens/Contributor via Getty Images
  /  02.10.2023

Demetrius Haley, one of the former officers involved in the brutal beating of Tyre Nichols allegedly participated in a 2015 inmate attack at the Shelby County jail.

The ex-Memphis cop is said to be one of many officers who reportedly beat then-inmate Cordarlrius Sledge, leaving his entire cellblock feeling so disturbed by the incident that they wrote a letter to the corrections director.

“We are truly asking that this matter gets looked into before someone gets hurt really bad or lose their life because of some unprofessional officers,” the letter stated. Inmates questioned how were they to feel “safe and secure when the staff members at the Shelby County Correctional Center are assaulting and threatening us?”

A year after the assault, Sledge filed a federal lawsuit against Haley. The court dismissed the suit on procedural grounds because Sledge did not file a grievance with the jail. The letter concluded by asking those in charge to “Please put a stop to this madness.”

But, even after being accused of committing the heinous act, Haley continued to work for the Division of Corrections until hired by the Memphis Police Department in 2020. The jailer attack was just one of numerous incidents that Haley’s name is attached.

A Black man in Memphis accused Haley and his former associates of assaulting him on Jan. 4. Monterrious Harris, 22, told a local news station that while waiting for his cousin outside of an apartment complex, Haley, along with ex-officers Tadarrius Bean, Desmond Mills Jr., Emmitt Martin III, and Justin Smith approached him in masks and hoodies.

Once Harris stepped outside of his car, the five ex-cops attacked him with one pushing his face into the concrete. Harris has since filed a federal lawsuit against all five officers involved in his assault.

Haley is also facing charges of second-degree murder, two counts of official misconduct, one count of official oppression, one count of aggravated assault, and two counts of aggravated kidnapping for his role in the attack on Nichols that ultimately led to his death.

On Jan. 7, 2023, Haley and his former fellow officer stopped and arrested Nichols. While handcuffed, Nichols was brutally beaten by all five officers as they took turns kicking and punching him.

After the assault, Memphis Police Department stated Nichols complained about being out of breath before being taken to a Memphis hospital, where he later died.

The five members of the SCORPION unit were fired, and their unit was permanently disbanded.



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