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Three Cleveland Police Officers Face Administrative Charges in Tamir Rice Case

Surveillance footage from the parking lot outside Cudell recreation center depicts the shooting of Tamir Rice by a police officer.

Three Cleveland police officers at Cudell recreation center the day 12-year old Tamir Rice was fatally wounded have been charged with administrative violations. 

Officer Timothy Loehmann, who fired the shot that killed Rice, will face six charges of knowingly providing false information on his May 2013 application to the Cleveland Police Department.  Officer Frank Garmback faces two charges including failing to “employ proper tactics” and failure to immediately report the car’s arrival on the scene to radio dispatch.  On November 22, 2014, Garmback drove his police car over a curb onto the grass at Cudell recreation center and skidded to a stop within a few feet of Rice.

Tamir Rice had been playing with an air soft pellet gun shortly before he was shot by Loehmann.  In 2015, a grand jury declined to indict either officer on criminal charges.

At a press conference with Rice’s mother Samaria, her lawyer Subodh Chandra says they're disappointed the charges fail to address use-of-force by Officer Loehmann.

“While the family is mildly relieved to see at least some charges lodged against these officers, the family is disappointed by the level of accountability which is insufficient,” says Chandra.

Samaria Rice adds that the process has taken too long.

A statement from the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association criticizes the city for the administrative charges against the two officers.  Regarding Officer Loehmann, the letter states, “It appears that the actual charges are created to discipline him, and perhaps discharge him, despite the fact that he did nothing wrong that day.”  The letter also questions the charge that Garmback could have “immediately” notified the dispatcher “given the speed and gravity of the events on that day.”

Both officers are scheduled for hearings before the city’s Safety Director on January 30.  Disciplinary measures could result in suspension, reduction in rank, or discharge.

Another officer, William Cunningham faces two charges of working a secondary job at Cudell without permission and submitting an “untruthful” report during the investigation of Rice’s shooting.  A fourth officer also faces disciplinary measures but the city has yet to name the officer or the charges.


*this story was updated to include comments from the Rice family and their lawyer.

See the charge letters below.






Annie Wu is the deputy editor of digital content for Ideastream Public Media.