**Related Video Above: Protests were peaceful after release of video that shows beating of Tyre Nichols.**
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG/AP) — Memphis Police announced on Saturday they have permanently disbanded the SCORPION unit.
In response to the tragic death of Tyre Nichols, Chief CJ Davis said “it is in the best interest of all to permanently deactivate the SCORPION Unit.”
MPD said officers who are currently assigned to the unit “unreservedly agree” with the steps the department is taking. Find the full statement below:
The unit is composed of three teams of about 30 officers who target violent offenders in areas beset by high crime. It had been inactive since Nichols’ Jan. 7 arrest.
Scorpion stands for Street Crimes Operations to Restore Peace in our Neighborhoods.
Protestors marching though downtown Memphis cheered when they heard the unit had been dissolved. One protestor said over a bullhorn “the unit that killed Tyre has been permanently disbanded.”
In an interview Friday with The Associated Press, Davis said she would not shut down a unit if a few officers commit “some egregious act” and because she needs that unit to continue to work.
“The whole idea that the Scorpion unit is a bad unit, I just have a problem with that,” Davis said.
The disbanding was announced as the nation and the city struggled to come to grips with video showing police pummeling the Black motorist.