The mayor of Cleveland has apologized after the city claimed that Tamir Rice died because of his own actions, according to BuzzFeed. Rice was the 12-year-old boy shot dead by a police officer in November while holding a toy gun.
Speaking at a news conference Monday, Mayor Frank Jackson said that a complaint detailing the city’s defense against a lawsuit filed on behalf of the boy’s family used a poor choice of words. He said he was sorry for the “insensitivity of those words.”
According to the AP, the city of Cleveland is hoping to hand over the investigation of a 12-year-old boy’s fatal shooting by police to an outside agency, as well as future investigations of all deadly use-of-force cases.
Michael McGrath, the city’s safety director and its former police chief, has been in talks with Cuyahoga County officials for the sheriff’s office to handle the inquiry, city spokesman Dan Ball told the Northeast Ohio Media Group for a story Thursday.
For now, Cleveland police investigators are collecting evidence and conducting interviews related to the Nov. 22 shooting of Tamir Rice.
The boy was carrying an airsoft gun that shoots nonlethal plastic pellets when a rookie officer shot him at a Cleveland playground.
Surveillance video released by police shows Tamir being shot less than two seconds after the patrol car stopped near him. Officer Timothy Loehmann told the boy to put his hands up, but he didn’t, according to police.
Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association President Jeff Follmer recently said that officers had no way of knowing the boy was carrying an airsoft gun that only looked like a real firearm.
Incoming Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish has participated in multiple meetings between Cleveland and sheriff’s officials since the shooting, said Dennis Williard, a spokesman for Budish’s transition team.
Here is more info on Tamir Rice.
On November 24, Cleveland officials announced that a grand jury would hear the case of Tamir Rice. They will decide whether police officers Loehmann or Garmback will be charged with Rice’s death. Both officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave.
On December 5, Rice’s family filed a wrongful death claim against Loehmann, Garmback, and the city of Cleveland in the United States District Court Northern District of Ohio.
The eight-page claim accused Loehmann and Garmback of acting “unreasonably, negligently [and] recklessly” and that “[h]ad the defendant officers properly approached Tamir and properly investigated his possession of the replica gun they would undoubtedly have determined … that the gun was fake and that the subject was a juvenile”. It also accused the city of Cleveland for failing to properly train both officers, as well as failing to learn about the Independence city internal memo made of Loehmann.
Also, dozens of people showed up for a morning rally outside the Cudell Recreation Center Saturday morning in Cleveland to remember Tamir Rice. A contingent of residents from Ferguson, Missouri were also at the rally in Cleveland.
There were also protests in Columbus, Ohio, over the weekend.
David Pakman video.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer tries to dig up dirt on the father of Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy shot by police in Cleveland who mistook his fake gun for a real one.
Sam Seder video.
The family of the 12-year-old boy who was fatally shot by a Cleveland police officer over a toy gun have filed a federal lawsuit claiming the officers “recklessly” shot the boy and then failed to give him immediate medical care.
Officer Timothy Loehmann, who fired the fatal shots, Loehmann’s partner Officer Frank Garmback and the City of Cleveland are all named as defendants in the suit.
The suit accuses Loehmann and Garmback of acting “unreasonably, negligently, recklessly, wantonly, willfully, knowingly, intentionally, and with deliberate indifference to the safety and rights of Tamir Rice.”
The suit also accuses the officers of failing “to secure timely medical assistance.” Surveillance video of the incident shows that Rice wasn’t given first aid by the officers until a medically-trained FBI agent arrived on the scene.
The lawsuit also attacks the policies of the City of Cleveland as a whole.
“Defendant City of Cleveland has a policy, practice and custom of using excessive force on African American citizens and that policy practice and custom was the moving force behind the excessive force used on Tamir Rice and proximately caused his suffering and death,” the suit states.
The suit does not specify how much money Rice’s relatives are asking for in compensation and damages but it asks that the issue be brought before a jury.