Another Ohio Police Department Hires the Cop Who Killed Tamir Rice

Illustration for article titled Another Ohio Police Department Hires the Cop Who Killed Tamir Riceem/em
Photo: Tony Dejak/File (AP)

Timothy Loehmann, the former Cleveland police officer who shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice in 2014, will soon have another badge and gun.


The village of Bellaire, OH, hired Loehmann as a part-time officer, The Intelligencer reported.

Loehmann, who is white, killed Rice, who was black, for brandishing a toy gun outside a Cleveland recreational center. Loehmann was responding to a 911 call that noted the gun was “probably fake” and shot Rice within 2 seconds of arriving on the scene. A grand jury decided not to charge Loehmann over the shooting.


The Cleveland Police Department fired him last year for omitting information on his employment application.

Bellaire Police Chief Richard Flanagan cited the lack of charges in his decision to hire Loehmann. “He was never charged. It’s over and done with,” Flanagan said, according to The Intelligencer.

Before he worked for the Cleveland Police Department, Loehmann worked as an officer in Independence, OH. At the time, the deputy police chief in Independence raised questions about Loehmann’s mental state and his ability to properly handle firearms.

According to the newspaper:

…Independence Deputy Chief Jim Polak wrote in Loehmann’s personnel file that he was “weepy” and “distracted” during firearms training. He allegedly told Polak that he was having trouble with his girlfriend at the time. But the deputy went further in his statements about Loehmann’s competence.

“He could not follow simple directions, could not communicate clear thoughts nor recollections, and his handgun performance was dismal,” Polak wrote in 2012.

Polak recommended that Loehmann should leave the department.

In 2009, Loehmann also failed an exam by another OH police department.

In 2016, the City of Cleveland announced a $6 million settlement with Rice’s family. In a statement at the time, the family’s attorneys said, “Although historic in financial terms, no amount of money can adequately compensate for the loss of a life.”


They added: “Tamir was 12 years old when he was shot and killed by police—a young boy with his entire life ahead of him, full of potential and promise. In a situation such as this, there is no such thing as closure or justice. Nothing will bring Tamir back.”

Weekend Editor, Splinter

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