Federal Indictments for Five Memphis Officers in Nichols Case: A Shift in Police Accountability?


FILE - This combo of images provided by the Memphis, Tenn., Police Department shows, top row from left, officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, and bottom row from left, Desmond Mills Jr. and Justin Smith. The five former Memphis police officers are now facing federal civil rights charges in the beating death of Tyre Nichols as they continue to fight second-degree murder charges in state courts arising from the killing. They were indicted Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023, in U.S. District Court in Memphis. (Memphis Police Department via AP, File)
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There is a major development in the police case that has rocked Memphis. Five officers linked to the deadly beating of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols are now facing federal indictments.

Officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr., and Justin Smith are being charged with several counts, including deprivation of rights.

Kevin Ritz, the U.S. Attorney for the federal district in West Tennessee, center, speaks with reporters about charges filed against five former Memphis Police Department officers in connection with the violent beating and death of Tyre Nichols, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Adrian Sainz)

The beating of Nichols occurred in January following a traffic stop and a brief foot chase. Nichols was violently beaten, suffering injuries that later led to his death in the hospital. The officers, who have already pleaded not guilty to state charges, are also staring down a federal civil lawsuit.

The Justice Department and the FBI are set to hold news conferences to announce the charges. The question is, what kind of turning point could this be in police accountability, if at all?

Click play to listen to the report from AURN White House Correspondent Ebony McMorris. For more news, follow @E_N_McMorris & @aurnonline.

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