The national leadership of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, whose members are affectionately called Ques, have revoked the memberships of three of the former Memphis police officers charged with the murder of Tyre Nichols.
Tadarrius Bean, 24, was formerly of the Nu Mu Mu chapter, while Emmitt Martin III, 30, and Desmond Mills, Jr., 32, were members of the Sigma Lambda Lambda chapter. Bean also served as the president of the University of Mississippi’s Eta Zeta chapter, according to a now-deleted LinkedIn page.
The fraternity announced the officers’ expulsion from its ranks in a statement on its website on Jan. 31.
“A few days ago, on behalf of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated, we joined with all other caring, thoughtful, decent, and fair-minded people in America and around the world in extending our deepest sympathy to the family of Tyre Nichols,” said the statement from the Ques’ 42nd Grand Basileus Ricky L. Lewis.
“We have since learned that three of the former Memphis police officers involved in the horrific incident were members of our organization. That is devastating! Effective immediately, the Fraternity has revoked the membership of the three former Memphis police officers and all related privileges they may have enjoyed as members of our Fraternity,” the statement continued.
“As we did in our earlier statement, we strongly condemn the conduct of the former Memphis police officers involved in the incident, including the three former members of our organization. The brutality shown in the video not only violated our moral sensibilities but also transgressed our Fraternal and established Code of Conduct,” the statement continued. “We have the utmost confidence in the judicial process and fervently pray that the Nichols family will obtain justice.”
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Founded at Howard University in November of 1911, Omega Psi Phi is the second oldest Black fraternity in the historic Greek-letter organizations that make up the “Divine Nine.” The Ques’ cardinal principles are “Manhood, Scholarship, Perseverance and Uplift.” Its motto means, “friendship is essential to the soul.”
Miami-based attorney Joshua Jones is a longtime member of Omega Psi Phi. He told Moguldom he hoped the officers’ expulsion from his fraternity wouldn’t be the end of the consequences they faced.
“Before we become a part of any organization, we are children of God and Black people. We should treat each other with love,” Jones said. “Black police officers also should not be using their badges to terrorize our community. Tyre Nichols was not greeted in love. Instead he was terrorized. I hope that expulsion from the greatest fraternity in the world is not the worst thing that happens to these police officers and as much justice as possible is afforded to Mr. Nichols’ family.”
The announcement from the Ques came after users on social media realized some of the officers were members and called them out as failing to live up to the frat’s values. Some also wondered why there hadn’t been a statement from the fraternity yet.
“You pledge an org in the Divine 9 meant to uplift. You get a degree in Criminal Justice. And then you immediately go out into the world to harass, torment, and brutalize Black people? And you only 24? Literally a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Nasty,” Twitter user @casttrowas94 wrote above a picture of Nichols on Saturday, Jan. 28.
“3/5 of Tyre’s killers are Ques and not one statement in sight …,” @nnekawitt tweeted on Jan. 28. She added, “better late than never?” in a follow-up tweet once she saw the statement.
“This sh!t is getting worse as it unfolds with every detail that comes out. This is a disgrace to Black organizations/fraternities that is all about unity among Black men…….. Brace yourselves; three of the officers apparently are Omega Psi Phi,” @Kene Akers tweeted.
Others came to the organization’s defense.
“The Ques don’t deserve the negativity y’all putting on them for this. It’s thousands of men out their uplifting the community and following they principles but y’all gone down a whole org based on a few,” @indy_alex901 wrote.
“I pray that we not be so shallow as to denigrate an entire organization based on the actions of a few foolishly misguided LEO’s playing follow the leading clown in Memphis, Tennessee,” Ali McBride tweeted. “Omega Psi Phi had nothing to do with the actions of a few misguided individuals.”
“Babyyyyy they’re blaming everyone except the 5 BM cops. So far they’ve blamed: Biden, Kamala, Obama, Hillary, Gay & Trans people, Black women, single mothers, Ques, Deltas, Wyte people, Eric Adams, Democrats,” @ArrogantNBlack wrote in response to one user’s tweet.
At least one user predicted the outcome of the fraternity’s decision. “They bout to snatch them letters so fast….,” @Swagger_Waggon6 said.
PHOTO: Collage of officers charged with Tyre Nichols’ murder. Left to right: Demetrius Haley, Desmond Mills, Emmitt Martin III, Justin Smith and Tadarrius Bean. (Twitter / @followtmorgan).