Black Lives Matter

The officer who shot Tamir Rice just got fired for lying

The Cleveland police officer who killed Tamir Rice was fired, but not for killing Tamir Rice.

Timothy Loehmann, the officer who fatally shot the 12-year-old boy in 2014 will be terminated for providing false information on his job application and omitting information about an “emotional breakdown” during a state qualification course, the Cleveland Police Department announced Tuesday.

The killing of Rice, who was playing with a toy pellet gun in a Cleveland park helped ignite the Black Lives Matter movement and fueled protests across the country.

Rice had been playing with what looked like a gun in a park near his home when someone called 911 to report him. The caller said Rice was “probably a juvenile” and the weapon was “probably fake,” but the officers were not given that information.

The officers drove into the park and pulled up right next to Rice, giving him and the officers little time to assess the situation. In a written statement Loemann wrote that he yelled  “show me your hands” multiple times before shooting. Surveillance video contradicted his account, showing Loehmann shooting Rice just seconds after the patrol car pulled up to the boy.

A grand jury declined to indict Loehmann and his training officer Frank Garmback who was driving the police car. Last year, the city of Cleveland paid Rice’s family $6 million to settle a civil lawsuit over the fatal police shooting but made no admission of wrongdoing.

 

Garmback will be suspended for 10 days beginning Wednesday for not following protocol when he drove up to a suspect assumed to be armed and not telling the dispatcher his arrival time at the scene.

The 911 dispatcher who failed to inform officers the caller said the gun was “probably fake” was suspended for eight days in March.

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