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CLEVELAND (WJW)– The mother of Tamir Rice is asking the Ohio Supreme Court to prevent former Cleveland Division of Police officer Timothy Loehmann from becoming a cop again.
Loehmann shot and killed the 12-year-old on Nov. 22, 2014 outside of Cudell Recreation Center on the city’s west side after a person called 911 reporting seeing a person with a gun.
The caller said the individual was, “probably a juvenile” and the gun was, “probably fake.” That information was not passed along to the officers, according to the investigation. Police said Loehmann opened fire when he said the boy reached towards his waistband. The gun turned out to be an airsoft pistol.
Loehmann was fired from the police force in 2017 for lying on his application, not Rice’s death. No criminal charges were filed.
“Officer Loehmann shot 12‑year-old Tamir without waiting even a second to process the situation or consider the devastating consequences of his actions,” said Subodh Chandra, the Rice family attorney. “His sense of entitlement after not just killing a child but lying to become a police officer should not be rewarded. He was, and remains, unfit to serve as a police officer, in Cleveland or anywhere else.”
An arbitrator and a Cuyahoga County judge upheld his firing. The Eighth District Court of Appeals refused to hear arguments in the case and last month, his attorney appealed to the Ohio Supreme Court.
“Timothy Loehmann can’t be trusted. I hope that the Supreme Court does not give him a chance to get back his job. The fact that the Cleveland police union is still trying to get him his job despite him killing my child and lying on his application to become a police officer shows you just how immoral that organization’s leadership is,” said Samaria Rice, the boy’s mother.
The Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association has continued to lobby on Loehmann’s behalf.
“They’re trying to say that we didn’t file this in a timely manner, and we’re saying, ‘Yes we did’ and we want the appeal and its merits to be heard,” said Jeff Follmer, president of the Cleveland police union, during an interview with FOX 8 last month. “The only thing they found that he did wrong was lied on his application, which we’re disputing that he did not lie on his application… Everything else was justified.”