Two Memphis police officers busted in undercover drug operation


Kevin Coleman (left) and Terrion Bryson

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two Memphis police officers are behind bars after they allegedly tried to protect a load of heroin entering the city.

According to police, the Organized Crime Unit set up a sting after receiving a tip back in 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, Terrion 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, Kevin 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.

Thursday night, 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.

Coleman and Bryson were charged with one count of Felony Conspiracy to distribute 2.5 kilos of heroin, one count of Criminal Attempt Felony to wit Possession of Controlled Substance with intent to manufacture, deliver, or sell heroin and one count of Felony Possession of a Firearm during the Commission of a dangerous felony, police said.

“This is a perfect example of great police work,” Police Director Michael Rallings said in a statement. “We recognized that two of our own were possibly involved with criminal activity and we investigated. We do not care what your profession is, and we do not care who you are; if you break the law and you are involved in illegal activity, we will stop you,.”
Coleman has been employed with the Memphis Police Department since June of 2012. Bryson has been with the department since August of 2015, MPD said.
Both officers are assigned to the Memphis Police Department’s Raines Station and have been relieved of duty pending the outcome of this investigation.

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