Monday, November 24, 2014

Cleveland police kill 12-year-old Black boy, Black boys and men are 21 times more likely than Whites to get shot dead by police, shooting comes on heels of settlement of lawsuit on 137 shots Williams, Russell deadly Cleveland police shooting, and the killing of Tanisha Anderson while in police custody

Pictured is 12-year-old Tamir Rice, whom Cleveland police shot and killed on Nov. 22

By Kathy Wray Coleman, editor-in-chief, Cleveland Urban News. Com and The Cleveland Urban News.Com Blog, Ohio's Most Read Online Black Newspaper and Newspaper Blog Kathy Wray Coleman is  a community activist and 20 year investigative journalist who trained for 17 years at the Call and Post Newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio. (www.clevelandurbannews.com) / (www.kathywraycolemanonlinenewsblog.com)

CLEVELAND, Ohio-A rookie Cleveland police officer has shot and killed a BB gun wielding 12-year-old boy who was Black, raising questions on whether the Cleveland Police Department is out of control and whether Black boys are at risk for inadvertent or deadly-force-type Cleveland police killings.

The replica gun was an air-soft BB gun, a toy gun, police said.

A 2012 study reviewed by ProPublica that analyzed federal data of public shootings reveals that on a national scale, Black men and boys are 21 times more likely than their White counterparts to get shot dead by police.

Tamir Rice, who was shot in the stomach Saturday afternoon at a recreational center on the city's west side, was rushed to MetroHealth Hospital where he later died.

A police spokesperson said the shooting incident is currently under investigation.

Police dispatchers allegedly received a 911 call with a complaint that a kid had a gun that was probably fake and was allegedly pointing it at people under a gazebo at the Cudell Recreation Center on West Boulevard. A later released surveillance-video, however, reveals that the kid was basically alone under the gazebo with the toy gun and two cops subsequently drove up withing ten feet of him and ultimately killed him.

Police say that the rookie cop, and a veteran police officer, both of whom are on administrative leave with pay, allegedly asked Rice to raise his hands and he allegedly raised his shirt and grabbed for what they thought was a gun.

Police say that the rookie cop, and a veteran police officer, both of whom are on administrative leave with pay, allegedly asked Rice to raise his hands and he allegedly raised his shirt and grabbed for what they thought was a gun.

The rookie cop then allegedly opened fire on Rice, firing two shots into his abdomen.

The boy's family has hired Timothy Kurcharski of the law firm of Kurcharski and Richardson.

Kurcharski has not spoken on specifics of the case other than to say that at no time did the boy point the BB gun at police officers.

Rice's friend, Gregory Henderson, was angry and said that police should have taken other precautions before killing his son, and in the least should have used a taser.

The tragic killing comes on the heels of several police killings from the 137 shots fatal shooting of unarmed Blacks Malissa Williams and Timothy Russell in 2012 to the killing by police just two weeks ago of an unarmed Black woman in custody (Tanishia Anderson).

The attorney for the estate of Russell said in an interview with Cleveland Urban News.Com after a tentative settlement in that case was reached that the Cleveland Police Department needs a serious overhaul.

"We have a lot more work to do to reform the Cleveland Police Department," said Gilbert, a Cleveland criminal defense attorney and constitutional lawyer who has settled record breaking wrongful death and excessive force cases involving Cleveland police.(www.clevelandurbannews.com) / (www.kathywraycolemanonlinenewsblog.com)