Memphis City Council delays vote on ‘Tyre Nichols Justice Policing Ordinance’

Published: Apr. 11, 2023 at 6:22 AM CDT|Updated: Apr. 11, 2023 at 11:16 AM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Memphis City Council delayed a vote for an ordinance on police reform directly in response to the death of Tyre Nichols.

The vote was scheduled for Tuesday, but will be pushed back indefintiely.

Advocates say the Tyre Nichols Justice Policing Ordinance does not reflect the changes they’d like to see within the Memphis Police Department.

Instead, it contradicts the five ordinances that just passed last month, that does require some type of reform within MPD.

The ordinance addresses when police can stop people for a traffic violation and when arrests are allowed.

The new ordinance also provides justification for when force is allowed during traffic stops.

Language in the ordinance also says it would not quote, “inhibit legitimate police techniques to combat crimes against citizens.”

In the ordinances passed last month, council members approved an ordinance that would require an independent investigation on each use of force complaint MPD receives.

The ordinance does not mention an investigation.

The vote will come after two passings of this ordinance and high tensions throughout previous city council meetings.

Action News 5 spoke with Amber Sherman, an organizer, yesterday who was banned from two meetings following vocal disapproval of this ordinance at the last reading.

“He told me that the council has full discretion to decide what they deem as offensive language or not. I told him that was an infringement on my constitutional rights. That’s not legal. And using that type of precedence is going to get them lawsuits,” said Amber Sherman, Organizer that was banned.

“When I see that something isn’t right, I don’t think it’s okay to be quiet about that. And I want to see change too. That looks like me doing a lot of organizing and I’ve been doing that for a while,” said Sherman.

A statement given to the group Decarcerate Memphis says the Wells family is against this particular ordinance – saying it doesn’t have any teeth, doesn’t address the way Tyre was murdered, and prevents it from happening to someone else again.

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