Cleveland Police Kill 12-Year-Old Boy Seconds After Responding To Toy Gun Disturbance

Cleveland Police released video of the fatal shooting of Tamir Rice by a rookie officer. [Warning: disturbing video]

2. Update: 6:15 p.m. ET — The Rice family has released a statement on the video through their attorney:

“We have seen the video that shows our son, Tamir, being shot and killed by a City of Cleveland police officer. It is our belief that this situation could have been avoided and that Tamir should still be here with us.

The video shows one thing distinctly: the police officers reacted quickly. It is our hope that the City of Cleveland Division of Police and the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office thoroughly examine the events outside of the Cudell Recreation Center on Nov. 22, 2014.

Again, we ask for the community to remain calm. Please protest peacefully and responsibly. Your prayers, kind words and condolences have meant so much to us.

We understand that some of you are hurt, angry and sad about our loss. But let’s use those emotions in a way that will contribute to positive efforts and solutions that bring change to Cleveland, Northeast Ohio and cities across the nation as it relates to how law enforcement officials interact with citizens of color.

We thank the City of Cleveland Division of Police for making the video public. We will await the results of their investigation.”

3. Original Story:

Cleveland Police released video Wednesday showing an officer’s fatal shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice. The video reveals that Officer Timothy Loehmann shot Rice just seconds after confronting him outside Cudell Recreation Center on Saturday.

Deputy Chief Edward Tomba confirmed during a press conference Wednesday that Loehmann shot Rice “1 ½ to 2 seconds” after arriving at the scene.

“Shots fired, male down, black male, maybe 20,” says the officer who called in the shooting.

In an initial statement following the tragic incident, a Cleveland Police spokesperson said, “Upon arrival on scene, officers located the suspect and advised him to raise his hands. The suspect did not comply with the officers’ orders and reached to his waistband for the gun. Shots were fired and the suspect was struck in the torso.”

The gun later proved to be a toy pellet gun.

According to Tomba, Loehmann wrote in his report of the incident that he ordered Rice three times to show his hands by yelling the command out the open door of the police car as the officers drove toward the recreation center’s gazebo.

Tomba says Loehmann, 26, started with the Cleveland Police department on March 3, 2014. A Cleveland Police spokesperson confirmed that Loehmann is white. The spokesperson said they have no plans at this time to release his statement.

Tomba says Loehmann and Officer Frank Garmback, 46, who drove the police car, have been placed on paid administrative leave pending a full investigation.

Police released the full surveillance tape from the park at the request of Rice’s family, who viewed the video first along with their lawyer, Tim Kucharski.

Prior to the shooting, the video shows Rice walking around the park while taking out the pellet gun and pointing it.

During the presentation, Cleveland Police also played the full 911 call from an unidentified man at the park who told dispatch the gun is “probably fake, but it’s scaring the shit out of me.”

Video footage does not appear to show Rice ever raise the pellet gun at the officers.

Police said that EMS responded to the scene four minutes after the shooting and started to give Rice medical attention and transported him to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland.

Rice went into surgery on Saturday night. He died early Sunday morning in the hospital.

The Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office is opening an investigation into the shooting.

4. Surveillance video shows Tamir Rice pointing a toy pellet gun while hanging out in a Cleveland park on Saturday, Nov. 23.

Cleveland Police

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Michael Hayes is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Mike Hayes at mike@buzzfeed.com.
 
 

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