Weekly Update

weekly update header

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

Bookmark and Share


As you may know, we felt it was extremely important to take swift and deliberate action to maintain transparency, accountability, public trust, and legitimacy amongst our community due to the circumstances surrounding the death of Mr. Tyre Nichols.

Therefore, on January 7, 2023, the Memphis Police Department (MPD) enlisted the assistance of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations (TBI) and the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office to conduct an independent investigation into the use of force by Memphis police officers.

In addition, MPD immediately began its own administrative investigation concerning policy violations. Since that time, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and U.S. Department of Justice have also been conducting a civil rights investigation into the death of Tyre Nichols. The City of Memphis and MPD have been fully cooperating with these agencies and providing them with what is needed to conduct their investigation.

Unlike private sector employees, there is a required procedural process before government civil servant employees can be disciplined or terminated from employment. MPD is working quickly and appropriately to go through the administrative disciplinary and investigative process, which is expected to be completed this week.

Under the tenets of procedural justice, every Memphis Police Officer is expected to treat all citizens with respect and dignity, while demonstrating due care for their safety and well-being. All officers are expected to act in accordance with their oath of office, their training, department policies and procedures, and solicit assistance from their supervisors when needed.

The video will only be released publicly after the completion of the internal investigation into the actions of the officers and after the family of Mr. Nichols has had the opportunity to review the video privately.

The City has spoken with Ben Crump, attorney for the family of Mr. Nichols, and we are arranging a meeting with them early next week to view the video footage.

Make no mistake, we take departmental violations very seriously and, while we must complete the investigation process, it is our top priority to ensure that swift justice is served. We want citizens to know that we are prepared to take immediate and appropriate actions based on what the findings determine.

The revolving door: On January 16, 2023, at 1:19 p.m., MPD responded to an address in mid-town for an attempted auto theft involving 8 to 10 armed suspects.  The suspects crashed the two cars they were driving into each other (later it was determined that these two cars were stolen) and started to run.

After an extensive search using the helicopter unit, the dog unit, and many officers on foot and in cars over a couple square mile area and through drainage ditches, MPD arrested one adult age 18 and seven juveniles ages 13 to 17.

It was determined that this group had stolen two cars and were attempting to steal a third car in three locations that day and were in possession of a stolen gun.

After this extraordinary effort and great police work, the perpetrators were simply let go.  The adult was released on his own recognizance—no bond required.


This type of “justice” is unacceptable. It sends the wrong message to criminals that there is no repercussion for dangerous criminal actions.

2023 Luminary Awards: In every generation and in every community, there are people who stand up and make a difference every day. The MLK Luminary Award was created to recognize Memphians who have served as trailblazers in our community. This year’s awardees are neighborhood leaders:

Theodora Alekos                                    Tanja Mitchell

Willie Mae Brooks                                  Quincy Morris

TK Buchanon                                          Fred Robinson, Jr.

Wendell. Donelson                                 Marvis L. Rodgers

Justin Gillis                                             Marcella Shepherd

Carolyn Goodwin                                    Stephanie Smith-Richmond

David Gross, Sr.                                     Jo Ann Street

Felicia P. Hartsfield                                 Linda K. Street

Olor W. Hughes                                      Sheryl Sullivan

Councilwoman Rhonda Logan               Barbara Taylor

LeuElla Hardin Marshall                         Earlice Taylor

Grace Austin Meacham                          Linda Whalen

Mary Mitchell                                          Linda Williams

                                                                      Treon A. Williams



Through their contributions to our community, they have served as a catalyst for change.

I would like to give special recognition to one of this year’s award winners—Steve Shular. Steve has served on our team since 2018 but has been in public service for the better part of his career. We are so lucky to have him. He has a heart of gold and truly is the hardest working public servant I have ever worked with. Thanks for all you do, Steve!

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stated that “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?” The group we are honored earlier this week have devoted their lives to living out those words.

On behalf of all the citizens of Memphis, thank you for your service, and may God bless you and our city in the new year.

Enjoy you weekend!


Mayor's signature