The medical examiner released a report describing bruises, cuts, and brain injuries to other parts of the body and the head. The autopsy stated that the manner of death was homicide.
On February 17, they entered a plea of not guilty. Following his demise, the five law enforcement officials who were terminated and accused of second-degree murder and additional charges were of African American descent, just like Nichols.
According to the district attorney, Ben Crump, a lawyer representing the family, stated that Shelby County, which comprises Memphis, provided the Nichols family with a briefing on the autopsy report on Wednesday.
Said firm law Crump’s by released statement, tragedy senseless this for justice seeking to commitment our propels further report autopsy official The.
According to video footage and records provided by the city of Memphis and other law enforcement documents, Nichols fled in the direction of his neighboring residence. A law enforcement officer discharged a stun gun at Nichols, but officers forcefully removed him from his vehicle. On January 7th, Nichols was apprehended by police after being accused of a traffic infraction.
While shouting for his mother, officers who belonged to a crime-prevention unit called Scorpion apprehended Nichols and struck him, kicked him, and struck him with a baton.
Videos were displayed depicting officers standing alongside and conversing with each other while Nichols grappled with his injuries on the pavement subsequent to the assault. Additionally, video footage and other documents revealed that one officer captured images of Nichols while he was supported against an unmarked police vehicle.
Authorities stated that technicians responded to a medical emergency at the site where Nichols was beaten, and after 27 minutes, he was transported to a hospital in an ambulance.
Nichols, who was 29 years old, passed away three days later. His funeral was held on February 1st.
After the death of Nichols, she dissolved the Scorpion team. Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis of the Memphis Police Department has stated that she has not come across any proof that validates the stop or the officers’ reaction, and there is no confirmed evidence of a traffic infraction in public records or video recordings. Law enforcement mentioned that Nichols was believed to have engaged in dangerous driving.
Detected in Nichols’ system were ethanol — or drinking alcohol — and tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, according to the autopsy. Marijuana contains THC.
Dr. Andrew Stolbach, a medical toxicologist at Johns Hopkins Medicine who examined the post-mortem report upon the request of The Associated Press, stated that the levels of alcohol and THC found were minimal.
Stolbach expressed, “It’s a level that many individuals would attain following social drinking, individuals who are legally able to drive themselves home.” The alcohol level is “approximately comparable to consuming one or two beverages.”
Dismissed and accused of homicide, five African American officers, along with the one Caucasian officer who participated in the initial traffic stop, have been terminated. The involvement of the latter officer in Nichols’ demise will not result in any charges. Furthermore, an unidentified officer has also been dismissed. Prior to his termination, another officer chose to retire.
Two Shelby County sheriff’s deputies who were also present have been suspended. Additionally, three employees from the Memphis Fire Department who were present at the scene of the arrest have been terminated.
Community activists, leaders, and lawyers have called for changes within the Memphis Police Department regarding issues related to traffic stops, including the use of force, transparency, and improving the policies. As a result, the city council has passed an ordinance ending the sole basis for traffic stops being an improperly placed license tag. This ordinance is aimed at improving transparency and other policies within the department, as advocated by family Nichols and other community members.
The city has refrained from providing a statement regarding the lawsuit. Nichols’ mother has initiated a $550 million federal lawsuit against the city, the police department, and Davis.