Former Memphis police officer sentenced in heroin scheme

Kevin Coleman (left) and Terrion Bryson

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A former Memphis Police officer was sentenced Thursday on charges related to a heroin smuggling scheme busted by undercover officers.

Terrion Bryson, 26, received eight years in prison with five years supervised release on narcotics and weapons charges. His accomplice, Kevin Coleman, was sentenced in November to 10 years in the case.

According to police, the Organized Crime Unit set up a sting after receiving a tip last February that two officers were stealing drugs and money during traffic stops. Subsequent traffic stops involving an undercover officer corroborated that claim.

On April 5 one of those officers, Bryson, contacted an undercover officer about protecting a shipment of narcotics scheduled to be moved into the city.

After several calls back and forth, Bryson told the undercover he needed another officer, Coleman, to help protect 2.5 kilograms of heroin from “being seized by legitimate law enforcement activities.”

The undercover officer agreed and stated he would pay them $9,000 — with half of it up front — if they would complete the job. Bryson collected his payment from a car parked at a Wal-Mart on Austin Peay, police said.

Bryson and Coleman, who was on duty and driving a Memphis Police Department vehicle, met the undercover officer at Riverside and Carolina and followed him to a storage unit on Millbranch.

The men were paid for their delivery and left. Police later took them into custody in a parking lot on Raines Road. Both men were armed.

This sentence will hopefully deter other corrupt police behavior, restore the public’s faith in honest officers, and send a message that nobody is above the law,” U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said.

 

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