2 Outside Reviews Say Cleveland Officer Acted Reasonably in Shooting Tamir Rice, 12

By Mitch Smith, New York Times

 

 

Tamir Rice, 12, was killed.

Tamir Rice, 12, was killed.

Two outside investigators looking into the death of Tamir Rice have concluded that a Cleveland police officer, Tim Loehmann, acted reasonably in deciding last year to shoot when he confronted the 12-year-old boy carrying what turned out to be a replica gun.

Those opinions, reached separately by a Colorado prosecutor and a former F.B.I. supervisory special agent, were released Saturday night by the Cuyahoga County prosecutor, Timothy J. McGinty, whose office will ultimately present evidence in the case to a grand jury to decide on possible criminal charges.

“The question is not whether every officer would have reacted the same way,” Kimberly A. Crawford, the retired F.B.I. agent, wrote in her report, which noted that Officer Loehmann had no way of knowing Tamir’s gun was fake. “Rather, the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer, confronting the exact same scenario under identical conditions could have concluded that deadly force was necessary.”

The reports, which were commissioned by the prosecutor’s office, come almost 11 months after the shooting outside a recreation center on Nov. 22, 2014. Footage of the shooting was captured on a surveillance camera, and Tamir’s name quickly became among the most prominent in a series of black men and boys whose deaths at the hands of the police were memorialized in Twitter hashtags and protest chants.

Both Ms. Crawford and S. Lamar Sims, the prosecutor from Colorado, said in their reports that they were evaluating Officer Loehmann’s actions under the United States Constitution, not Ohio state law…

Tamir’s death resulted in a lengthy series of investigations that have frustrated some activists, who see the shooting as a clear case of police overreach and have called for the arrests of Officer Loehmann and his partner, Officer Frank Garmback, who drove his police cruiser to within feet of Tamir but who did not fire his weapon. Some have criticized Officer Garmback for parking his cruiser so close…

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MO Governor Declares State Of Emergency Ahead Of Grand Jury Decision

By Ashley Alman, HuffingtonPost.com

Gov. Jay Nixon (D) issued an executive order on Monday declaring a state of emergency in Missouri as the nation awaits a grand jury decision in the case of the fatal shooting of Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.

People protest Monday, Aug. 18, 2014, for Michael Brown

People protest Monday, Aug. 18, 2014, for Michael Brown

Citing “periods of unrest” in the city of Ferguson and other places in the St. Louis area following Brown’s Aug. 9 death, Nixon announced the executive order as a measure to protect the citizens and businesses of Missouri from “violence and damage.”

“I further direct the Missouri State Highway Patrol together with the St. Louis County Police Department and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department to operate as a Unified Command to protect civil rights and ensure public safety in the City of Ferguson and the St. Louis region,” Nixon wrote in the order, noting that citizens reserve their right to assemble peacefully.

Protesters have already begun demonstrating throughout Ferguson, St. Louis and the surrounding areas, as the grand jury’s decision on whether to indict Wilson could come at any moment. On Monday, a group of protesters gathered in Clayton, where the grand jury is deliberating. Others staged a “die-in” in University City, lying down on the street and pretending to have been shot…

Read full article and executive order here.

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