Ohio mother in D.C. to fight for justice for son slain by police
Samaria Rice marched through Lafayette Square on behalf of her son, Tamir Rice, shot by Cleveland Police in 2014.
WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - “It has not been easy, let me tell y’all,” said Samaria Rice, the mother of Tamir Rice who was fatally shot by Cleveland police in 2014. Calling for justice for her 12-year-old son, Rice marched through Lafayette Square in front of The White House, Tuesday.
Supporters at the rally are hopeful federal officials will take a second look at Tamir’s case.
“Nov. 22 will be seven years that I’ve been fighting for justice for my son,” said Rice.
Speaking to a crowd of supporters, Ms. Rice shared her determination for the Justice Department to take another look at her son’s death. According to Rice and her legal team, the Obama administration determined further investigation was needed.
“The last administration felt it was probable cause to convene a grand jury, and the Trump administration just sat on it,” said Rice.
Tamir was killed in November 2014 after a 911 call was placed alerting police to quote “a guy with a pistol.” The gun Tamir was playing with was a toy.
Surveillance video from the shooting shows a Cleveland police cruiser responding to the call. It pulled up to a park gazebo where Tamir was sitting.
The video shows within seconds of arriving, Officer Timothy Loehmann shot the 12-year-old. Officer Frank Garmback also responded to the call.
On the local level, the officers weren’t charged with any wrongdoing.
The case made it to the federal level with the Justice Department quietly closing the case last December. Officials declined charges against the officers saying the video was “too poor quality for prosecutors to conclusively establish what happened.”
The Rice family disputes this. “I have a meeting tomorrow with the DOJ, and I’m asking that they reopen Tamir’s case on a federal level because his civil rights were violated,” said Rice.
Rice is scheduled to meet with DOJ representatives Wednesday.
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