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Family Says Rumors Tyre Nichols Was Having Affair With Cop’s Wife Aren’t True

Memphis, TN – At a candlelight prayer vigil on Tuesday night the family of Tyre Nichols addressed scandalous rumors that have been spreading online that alleged the late 29 year old had been engaging in an affair with a Memphis police officer’s wife.

Rodney Wells, Nichols’ stepfather, brought up the rumors while he was talking about his stepson at the vigil outside his home, WHBQ reported.

“Don’t anybody believe that mess,” Wells told the assembled crowd. “They trying to get out of this. But they’re not.”

The grieving father was referring to online rumors that claimed Nichols’ had worked with one of the officer’s wives at FedEx and had engaged in an illicit relationship with her, TMZ reported.

“My son was not messing around with one of the officer’s wives. That’s just a rumor,” Wells told the assembled crowd.

“Police tried to cover it up,” he added, according to FOX News. “They [are] still trying to spread rumors about my son that are not true.”

There have also been unsubstantiated rumors that one of the officers sent a picture of Nichols to the woman he allegedly had the affair with after he was beaten by police, TMZ reported.

Wells told the crowd of media and supporters gathered at the vigil that that the rumors weren’t true and they were making a difficult time even worse for the family, WHBQ reported.

“Losing a son is the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life and to stand up here every day and try to put on this face and all of that is difficult, but we have to do it,” he said. “I have a wife I have stepchildren who need my support so I’m going to give it to them.”

The incident began just before 8:30 p.m. on Jan. 7 after Memphis Police Department (MPD) officers observed Nichols weaving in and out of traffic and stopped his car at an intersection, according to one of four videos released by the police department on Jan. 27.

Nichols resisted arrest, was pepper sprayed, fled the scene, and was Tased by an officer, but videos showed none of that slowed him down.

Officers chased him down on foot and ultimately caught up with him.

Bodycam and aerial pole camera footage showed that when officers caught up with Nichols at the second scene, he resisted arrest and lunged for an officer’s holstered weapon.

The videos also showed that multiple officers brutally beat Nichols with their fists, one of them kicked him twice in the head, and another used his extendable baton to strike the suspect three times. Two officers arrived as he was being handcuffed and each kicked him in the abdomen.

He was propped up against a police car and kept falling over to the pavement as medical help arrived on the scene.

Bodycam videos from the scene showed that after the fire department arrived on the scene to assist Nichols, there was a delay in care for the obviously injured man and a general sense of a lack of urgency at the scene.

The lieutenant never got out of the fire truck.

The Memphis Fire Department (MFD) launched its own investigation into the incident, WREG reported.

“Our investigation has concluded that the two EMT’s responded based on the initial nature of the call (person pepper sprayed) and information they were told on the scene and failed to conduct an adequate patient assessment of Mr. Nichols,” the fire department said in a statement, according to NBC News.

MFD said the EMTs requested an ambulance on the scene at 8:41 p.m. and it arrived nine minutes later.

Nichols was transported to St. Francis Hospital at 9:08 p.m. in what authorities have since said was critical condition, WREG reported.

He died in the hospital three days later from injuries sustained during his arrest.

The lieutenant and two EMTs were fired on Monday for failing to follow department policy and protocol when they responded to the scene after Nichols was beaten by police, WREG reported.

The Shelby County Medical Examiner’s Office has not yet ruled on Nichols’ official cause of death.

Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis fired five of the officers involved in the incident on Jan. 20, NBC News reported.

Now-former Memphis Police Officers Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr., and Justin Smith were indicted by a grand jury on Jan. 26.

Each of the officers, all of whom are black, was charged with second-degree murder, aggravated assault-acting in concert, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of official misconduct, and one count of official oppression, NBC News reported.

Each of the five officers posted a $250,000 bond and all of them were released from the Shelby County Jail within 24 hours of being arrested.

On Jan. 30, Memphis police officials announced that the officer who Tased Nichols during his arrest had been relieved of duty pending an investigation into the incident.

Written by
Sandy Malone

Managing Editor - Twitter/@SandyMalone_ - Prior to joining The Police Tribune, Sandy wrote the Politics.Net column for the Wall Street Journal and was managing editor of Campaigns & Elections magazine. More recently, she was an internationally-syndicated columnist for Conde Nast (BRIDES), The Huffington Post, and Monsters and Critics. Sandy is married to a retired police captain and former SWAT commander.

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Written by Sandy Malone


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