David Allen Brown plans to leave Las Vegas after attending an Adele concert as part of his daughter’s 25th birthday next week, catch a midnight flight to Chicago, where he will hop on another plane to Richmond, Virginia, to attend the funeral of a friend and fellow Omega Psi Phi brother.
“That’s what Omega taught me,” said Brown, who was initiated into the fraternity 40 years ago at Norfolk State University’s Pi Gamma chapter. “Brotherhood. Manhood. Respect. Not what you’ve heard about and seen from the tragedy in Memphis.”
Three of the five officers who were arrested and charged with second-degree murder after the fatal beating of Tyre Nichols were Ques, the nickname for Omega Psi Phi members, a national Black fraternity founded in 1911 at Howard University.
The national Greek letter organization announced in a statement that it had revoked the membership of three officers, whom it did not name. The Memphis Commercial Appeal identified them as Tadarrius Bean, who had been president of his chapter at the University of Mississippi; Emmitt Martin III; and Desmond Mills Jr.
“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,” Ricky L. Lewis, the grand basileus of the national fraternity, said in a statement Tuesday. “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.”
Brown, a retired housing authority president based in Long Branch, New Jersey, said the officers’ actions are “not what we are about in any way. I’ve always looked at Omega men as being leaders and leaders of leaders, learning Robert’s Rules of Order, learning how to be a man, learning how to respect the sanctity of womanhood, embracing that extended family that comes with the brotherhood.
“What the video showed was not Omega.”
The national office concurred, adding in its statement that “the brutality shown in the video not only violated our moral sensibilities but also transgressed our Fraternal and established Code of Conduct. We have the utmost confidence in the judicial process and fervently pray that the Nichols family will obtain justice.”