The Memphis, Tennessee police have announced that they have dissolved the special ‘Scorpion’ group which included the five policemen indicted in the death of Tire Nichols, the 29-year-old African American who died in hospital from the consequences of the beating he was was subjected during an arrest, which took place in early January. The victim’s family and civil rights activists had been asking for days that the special unit, created to control the areas of Memphis with the highest crime rates, be dismantled. “It is in everyone’s best interest – the police department explained – that the Scorpion unit is permanently dissolved”.
The detention on January 7, death on the 10th in hospital
The decision was made, according to the statement, “after hearing from Tire Nichols’ family, community leaders and officers not involved” in the African American’s death, and who, the police continued, “put quality into their work”. Nichols had been stopped on January 7 by the agents of the ‘Scorpion’ for an alleged traffic offense committed with his car, at an intersection, about a hundred meters from the house. Forced out of the car, the African American had been beaten and then, after an attempt to escape, beaten with kicks in the face and repeated punches. None of the five police officers, African Americans like the victim, had stopped the others, and not even the other colleagues, who arrived shortly after, had got in the way to put an end to the beating. Admitted to the hospital, Nichols died on January 10 of internal and external injuries, including fractures to the neck and skull.