Omaha Police denounce actions of Memphis officers involved in Tyre Nichols’ death

Omaha Police say they are on alert ahead of the planned release of the Tyre Nichols video
Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 2:25 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Police told 6 News on Friday that officers will be “monitoring the situation” here in Omaha in the aftermath of the expected release of video footage showing the fatal beating of a Memphis man by police officers.

Family members of Tyre Nichols and their lawyers have said the footage shows five officers savagely beating the 29-year-old FedEx worker for three minutes in an assault that the legal team likened to the infamous 1991 police beating of Los Angeles motorist Rodney King.

Five Memphis officers were fired last week and are facing charges over the incident, but other officers were still being investigated for violating department policy. Court records showed that all five former officers — Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Desmond Mills Jr., Emmitt Martin III and Justin Smith — were taken into custody and all booked on charges of second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression.

Shelby County District Attorney Steve Mulroy said in a news conference that although the five each played different roles in the killing, “they are all responsible.”

At least two of them plan to plead “not guilty,” according to their lawyers.

An OPD spokesperson said police in many major cities, including Omaha, plan to be watching out for any potential fallout from the video’s release, which is expected to be made public on Friday evening. OPD is also communicating with community partners in the event that they anticipate any locally related events.

Friday evening Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer released a statement on the incident.

“As an agency we want to express our sadness and offer our condolences to the family of Mr. Tyre Nichols.

I want to commend the Memphis Police Chief and District Attorney for taking swift, decisive actions regarding the involved officers. Criminal activity by police officers can never be tolerated. Not in Memphis. Not in Omaha. Not anywhere. The five Memphis officers have undermined the trust that communities place in law enforcement all across the country. We denounce their actions.

The Omaha Police Department is dedicated to upholding the trust placed in it by the community. Further, we are committed to transparency, accountability, and the high level of integrity that our citizens demand.”

Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer

Nichols’ family members have pleaded for any protests to remain peaceful. His mother and stepfather participated in a candlelight vigil and prayer service at a Memphis skate park on Thursday night. Nichols, who had a 4-year-old son, was an avid skateboarder.”

Gray News, The Associated Press, and CNN contributed to this report.