The city of Cleveland has placed the death of Tamir Rice squarely on the shoulders of the 12-year-old shooting victim. On Nov. 22, Rice was gunned down by rookie officer Timothy Loehmann, after he and his partner Frank Garmback responded to a 911 call that a boy at a recreation center was pointing a gun at people. The caller went on to inform the emergency dispatcher the gun was more than likely fake and was being held by a child. Surveillance video showed moments after the officers rushed to the scene, Loehmann opened fire on Rice. Rice died from his injuries the following day at the hospital. Now, NBC News is reporting in a response to the wrongful death lawsuit filed by Rice’s family last month, the city has denied any responsibility for Rice’s death.
On Feb. 27, the city claimed in court documents any “losses” the Rice family suffered were, “directly and proximately caused by the acts of the Plaintiff’s decedent (Rice), not this Defendant.” How is that even possible when video camera footage shows when Loehmann and Garmback arrived on the scene, Loehmann shot Tamir without even attempting to find out if the gun was real or not!? The city also stated Rice’s injuries were caused as a result of him lacking to ‘exercise due care” and charged Rice’s sister and mother’s complaints against the officers were “directly caused by their own act,” and not Loehmann and Garmback’s. In the suit Rice’s family claimed his 14-year-old sister was falsely imprisoned when she rushed to the playground and tried to tend to her brother. Rice’s sister was handcuffed and thrown in the back of Loehmann and Garmback’s squad car while she watched her brother dying on the ground.