A community advocate said Nichols’ family described him as a Sacramento native who never got into trouble and loved to skateboard.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Five Memphis police officers are now facing second-degree murder charges after the death of a Sacramento native.
It started with a traffic stop in Memphis and ended three days later with the death of 29-year-old father and FedEx worker, Tire Nichols.
Nichols’ family says officers beat him for three minutes and police say all five fired officers are responsible.
Community advocate Berry Accius has been in close contact with Nichols’ family in Sacramento. He says they’re comparing the situation to when Rodney King was brutally beaten by LAPD officers in 1991, and that the family is exhausted and frustrated.
“Not surprised but then surprised because this is probably the fastest time we’ve ever seen officers being charged… officers being fired as well,” said Accius.
He says Nichols’ family described him as a Sacramento native who never got into trouble and loved to skateboard. The family is heartbroken and hoping for justice after reviewing video of the beating.
“Once the video started and I heard my son’s voice, I lost it,” said his mother, RowVaughn Wells.
The family is trying to wrap their heads around why their younger sibling was taken from them.
“I think the confusion is in our whole community because for so often we’ve heard the idea of getting more Black police officers, more diversity in a police system, that things will change,” said Accius. “You see five Black officers orchestrate a gang-style murder.”
He says he can’t speak on behalf of the family about if they see murder charges as a win and even if the charges stand, whether that means justice when all is said and done.
“We so oftentimes get disappointed when the trial happens and you find officers being acquitted, or they’re not charged in the same way they were charged in the beginning. So… they want to see these officers rot in prison for the rest of their lives,” said Accius.
A candlelight vigil is planned at 6:30 pm Monday at the Regency Skatepark on Honor Parkway.
5 former Memphis police officers face murder charges in death of Tire Nichols