Tire Nichols: Following the swift indictment of 5 officers, the remainder of the investigation into Nichols’ death will “take much longer,” the officer says


After five former Memphis police officers were quickly charged with second-degree murder in connection with the killing of Tire Nichols less than three weeks after his death last month, the remainder of the investigation is expected to take much longer, a spokesman for prosecutors said Friday.

The Shelby County District Attorney’s Office said it is waiting for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation to complete its investigation before the independent justice unit can begin its review and make recommendations on other possible charges in the case.

The prosecutors’ initial indictments came quickly because “the focus was on the five officers” whose actions were “clear and clear,” Erica Williams, a spokeswoman for the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office, told CNN on Friday.

“Investigations usually take a long time,” Williams said. “I don’t want to say that people were spoiled with the fast attacks. The rest will take much longer.”

Five black former officers are scheduled to be charged Feb. 17 after being fired Jan. 20, and then each charged with seven counts including second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping involving assault, aggravated kidnapping in possession of a deadly weapon , official misconduct and official suppression, Shelby County District Attorney Steve Mulroy announced Jan. 27.

Two other officers — one white and one who has not yet been publicly identified — who were placed on furlough on Jan. 8 remain under internal investigation, police said.

Nichols, a 29-year-old black man, was hospitalized after a Jan. 7 traffic stop and a “confrontation” with Memphis police, which family attorneys have described as a brutal beating. Nichols succumbed to his injuries on Jan. 10, three days after the arrest, authorities said.

“We are looking at everyone who was involved in this incident in any way,” Mulroy told CNN days after the public body camera and surveillance footage of the encounter was released.

The city of Memphis last week released body camera and surveillance footage showing “the relevant parts” of the first stop and the beating at a second location, according to Mulroy. But up to 20 hours of additional footage related to the encounter has yet to be released, which could play a key role in the investigation, Mulroy said Wednesday.

The released video has contradicted what officers said in the first police report filed after Nichols was beaten. And possible “false reporting” charges related to the initial police report are being investigated, Williams told CNN on Wednesday.

In addition to the police, three employees of the Memphis Fire Department have been fired and two deputies from the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office have been suspended for their role in the case, heads of those agencies said.

All of the fired officers and one who is still on furlough were part of the force’s SCORPION unit – which was formed to combat rising crime in the city and disbanded following the death of Nichols amid national outcry – the department has confirmed.

None of the fired officers had previously been disciplined for excessive force, although several had received written reprimands or brief suspensions for violating department policies, their personnel files show.

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