Calls for peace, justice continue after police-involved shooting of Tamir Rice

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CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Calls for peace and justice continue across Cleveland, after police shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice last weekend.

Several groups gathered Friday to make their voices heard.

A few dozen residents gathered at the Trinity Outreach Ministries Church of God in Christ in Cleveland to voice their concerns. Wednesday, Cleveland police released surveillance video of the incident.

"This is a hate crime, that hurt me to my heart, I had to pull back, I couldn't take it," said resident Pierre Napier.

"Can we tolerate a world where the lives of black people mean nothing?...it's that basic," said another resident.

"God, we know there is a great deal of unrest in the community, but God this is why we call upon you because you are a God that can make things better," prayed pastor Dr. Andrew Clark.

Saturday afternoon, Cleveland police officers were called to Cudell Recreation Center on the city's west side to reports of a male pointing a gun at people.

Police say less than two seconds after pulling up, one of the officers shot and killed Tamir after he says the child pulled a gun from his waistband. Investigators say the dispatcher never told officers the 911 caller thought the suspect could be a juvenile and that the gun might have been a fake.

Rice was found with an airsoft gun.

"If a black person reaches for something, their knee jerk response now is to shoot," said one resident.

"I've been on the job almost 30 years, and I've never had to shoot anybody, and I've been out there," Cleveland police Lieutenant Benjamin Gaba told the crowd.

Gaba did not speak specifically about the shooting of Tamir, but says officers never want to fire their weapon.

"I don't think guys are going out to just try to shoot somebody. I don't think anybody on the police department's doing that," Gaba said.

Earlier Friday afternoon, a forum was held at Greater Abyssinia Baptist Church. College students discussed Rice's shooting.

"If you thought he was a grown man, then you just completely violated his rights, and you won't accept us being armed, legal or illegal,” said one student.

Both officers involved in the shooting are on paid administrative leave.

Read more here.

11 comments

  • Matt

    You people are supposed to be responsible news people. STOP CALLING CALLING BB AND PELLET GUNS ” AIR SOFT GUNS!!!!!!!! They are dangerous and can hurt, and in some cases kill. That boy had a weapon period. A toy gun doesn’t shoot BB’s or pellets! Get it right.

    • Sarah Or

      I agree. Also you have to think the tip was knocked off so it appeared he was waving a real gun around. Even if you did that back in the 60’s you would have been shot by the police. Don’t care what your race is. Common sense isn’t very common but some pretty dump people know not to go saving a fake gun around at strangers in the street. What was this kid expecting seeing he knows the violence that can happen. Did he expect the cops to throw him a parade for his bold behaviour?

  • Sarah Or

    I predict another city burning in a race riot over this despite the fact that the kid was an idiot that was trying to instigate trouble. Did anyone watch that video? He was pointing it at people! I don’t care if the colored tip WAS still on it, it shows a clear state of mind and I’m not so sure the kid wouldn’t be doing it with a real gun if he ever got his hands on one.

  • Michael 1

    It’s funny how whites can walk around with rifles & pistols, are questioned,nicely by police, & live. Yet a black man, in a store,carrying a store rifle,not pointing at anyone ,or causing a disturbance, is shot & killed, without any questions ! The disregard for a Black persons life in this country , is a worldwide disgrace !

  • dumpsterdog

    The people that are complaining about this are phonies. If they look at and use logical facts, they will understand the position that this kid put the police in. If you have a gun (fake or not) and don’t obey a police command you will be shot. If their lives matter, will they stop having abortions. If it had been a white kid would there be any discussion?

    • MOJO

      Of course there would be discussion if it was a white kid. Those cops would be detained if that was a white kid. Are you kidding me? But let’s also look and realize the famous white faces who have shot up schools and movie theaters who actually killed people brandished weapons and WERENT killed. A guy in a movie theater with a weapon who murdered people is alive and a kid waving a gun is dead and perceived as more threatening. Yeah, explain that to me.

  • SkipIt55

    I feel for the family of Tamir a 12-year old boy who died while playing with a pellet gun in the park. We did when I was his age…no problem. Yet times have changed and we only have to look at Ferguson as an example. Another tragedy whose flames have been fanned by national leaders who pay no attention to the same tragedies that take place everyday across America. I will not judge either Tamir (who should have never reached in his waistband) or the Officer (whose appeared to be only ‘feet’ from Tamir) until the DA and others have provided all the facts. Being from Cleveland however…I would ask that everyone begin to discuss and create a dialogue. Be better than the other cities. Do not let the activists into your community. Discuss the things that have broken our inner cities…education, crime, broken families, and distrust. We are better than this! God’s speed Tamir…

  • Katie Hamley

    That poor kid was executed, plain and simple. Murdered within seconds of their arrival at the scene. Those of you making an issue of the orange tip are just sick. The tip would have made no difference in the outcome. If you do not understand that simple fact, you are too dumb to understanding anything. Anyone who attempts to justify on any level this killing is a sick individual. A boy playing with a toy gun, probably lost in some fantasy of cops and robbers, cowboys and Indians, just as every other 12 year old boy has ever done, but you sick, boot licking jerks what to somehow blame the boy. Are you people stupid? Dumb question, I know. He was killed within 2 seconds. He did not have time to do much of anything. You people are sick beyond words. Just a boy. And yet in your diseased minds the act was somehow justified, that he somehow was responsible for his own murder. Again, just sick.

    • Raif McAllister

      So if people see things differently (as they really are) they are “dumb”? Wow, what logic. You are for sure a top genius.

    • Raif McAllister

      Oh yeah, and I blame her felon parents for the shooting. Had they done their jobs the boy would still be alive.

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