Five other officers had already been fired and charged with murder over the death of the 29-year-old Black man.
Preston Hemphill, who had been in the southern US city’s police force since 2018, “violated multiple departmental policies,” including on “personal conduct,” “truthfulness” and regulations on Taser gun use, the department said in a statement.
Five other officers had already been fired and charged with murder over Nichols’ death.
“While we disagree with this termination, Preston Hemphill will continue to cooperate with all authorities in the investigation into the death of Mr Nichols,” Lee Gerald, a lawyer representing Hemphill, said by telephone, according to Reuters news agency.
Gerald declined to comment on whether his client would also face criminal charges, but said of his cooperation with the investigation: “That speaks for itself.”
Hemphill, a white man, had been suspended since the beginning of the department’s investigation, but that was not made public until Monday.
Nichols was arrested by members of a special police unit called Scorpion on January 7 for what police said was a traffic violation.
Footage of his vicious beating, recorded on body cameras and security cameras, triggered national outrage when it was made public last week.
Shelby County District Attorney Steve Mulroy has said other police officers, fire department personnel and others who prepared documentation of the incident may also face criminal charges as more information becomes available.
Legislators and civil rights advocates in the United States are calling on President Joe Biden’s administration to do more to advance police reform in light of Nichols’ death.
Harris, in a speech at the funeral, said Washington would settle for nothing less than ambitious federal legislation to end police violence.