The city of Cleveland has responded to a wrongful death lawsuit filed by Tamir Rice’s family and it ain’t pretty. The city has decided to keep it classy and blame the 12-year-old for his own death even though the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department investigation into the shooting isn’t even finished.
Tamir Rice’s family filed the lawsuit in December and allege that officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback used excessive force and ignored Tamir’s medical needs after he was shot. They also make mention of the officers tackling Rice’s sister after she saw that her brother was shot. The suit also alleges that the city is “withholding substantial evidence and information” and failed to properly investigate its officers properly.
In their response to the suit, the city denies having enough evidence to properly respond to the allegations “in light of the fact that the circumstances of this incident will not be known until the completion of the investigation by the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Office.”
Then they give their defense to the “Tamir Rice incident”:
Plaintiffs’ decedent’s injuries, losses, and damages complained of, were directly and proximately caused by the failure of Plaintiffs’ decedent to exercise due care to avoid injury.
Plaintiffs’ injuries, losses, and damages complained of, were directly and proximately caused by their own acts, not this Defendant.
That’s right they just said Rice, who was shot almost immediately by Loehmann, was to blame. The kid, who even 911 callers said was playing with a toy gun, is to blame for his own death? That seems legit. . . not.
Not only did they blame Tamir for his death but they then blamed his family too:
Plaintiffs’ decedent’s injuries, losses, and damages complained of were directly and proximately caused by the conduct of individuals or entities other than Defendant.
Oh yeah, “individuals or entities other than Defendant,” can’t be Loehmann or the city so who do you think they are?
Basically Cleveland denied having enough knowledge to respond to the complaint and at the very end blamed everyone they could possibly blame it on. They essentially crossed their arms, stomped their feet, and acted like a five-year-old who denied breaking something that everyone watched them break.
The incident was on video. The police didn’t even attempt to question this child, they just shot him. I guess we shouldn’t be that surprised though, this is the same police department who the Department of Justice says uses excessive force far too often and has such poor firearm training that they are a danger to themselves and the public.
Keep it classy, Cleveland.
Featured image via Wikipedia