Grand Jury Testimony, Evidence, Being Reviewed In Tamir Rice Case

Activists at a Tamir Rice family press conference in June (pic: Brian Bull)
Activists at a Tamir Rice family press conference in June (pic: Brian Bull)

By ideastream's Brian Bull

A grand jury is currently hearing testimony in the fatal shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice. 

Steve Loomis, president of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association (CPPA), says officers have been in to testify before a grand jury since Friday, October 23rd.  More went in the following Monday.  He says about six law enforcement officials so far have testified, including dispatchers and those who were called to the scene after Rice’s shooting.

According to Loomis, neither Timothy Loehmann – the officer who shot Rice -- nor Frank Garmback -- who drove the police car -- have been subpoenaed.  He says whether they testify is a matter left between the men and their attorneys.

Loomis adds that the CPPA will continue to cooperate in the Grand Jury’s investigation

Rice was fatally wounded by Loehmann on November 22, 2014.  According to an investigation by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s office, Loehmann and Garmback were responding to a 911 call about someone waving a gun around.  They were not told that the gun could have been fake.  The officers’ patrol car pulled up to Rice, and Loehmann shot him in the abdomen within seconds. It was discovered that Rice’s gun was a pellet gun that had the orange safety tip removed.

UPDATE: Subodh Chandra, whose law firm is among several representing the Rice family, sent 90.3 WCPN a statement last night (10/28).  Chandra says the Rice family continues to lack confidence in the prosecutor’s handling of the grand jury process, and wish Tim McGinty to step aside for an independent prosecutor. 

The grand jury will decide whether charges should be filed against Loehmann or Garmback.

A spokesman for the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office says they cannot comment on any aspect of the grand jury process or timeline.  

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