A 911 dispatcher who took the call that led to the fatal police shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice outside a recreation center more than two years ago has been suspended for eight days.
In a disciplinary letter dated March 10, Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams found that Constance Hollinger violated protocol on the day of Tamir’s shooting, the Associated Press reports. Cleveland’s internal disciplinary charges accused Hollinger of failing to tell the dispatcher who sent the officers to the rec center that the 911 caller reporting about a “guy” pointing a gun at people also noted that the individual could be a juvenile and that the gun might be a “fake.”
Former Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty cited this omission as a crucial mistake that influenced how responding officers Timothy Loehmann—who fired the fatal shots within seconds of pulling up next to Tamir—and his partner, Frank Garmback, responded.
McGinty argued that the shooting may have been avoided if the information had been properly relayed to the officers.
In a disciplinary letter also dated March 10, another police officer, William Cunningham, was given a two-day suspension for working off-duty without permission at the rec center where Tamir was killed.
Tamir’s mother, Sarmaria Rice, says that she is unimpressed by the punishments handed down to the dispatcher, saying in a statement issued Tuesday through her attorney that Hollinger’s eight-day suspension was “unacceptable.”
“Eight days for gross negligence resulting in the death of a 12-year-old boy,” Rice’s attorney, Subodh Chandra, said in the statement. “How pathetic is that?”
Chandra added that if that was the best “that system can offer, then the system is broken.”
As AP notes, the officers involved in Tamir’s shooting, Loehmann and Garmback—neither of whom was criminally charged in the case—could still face discipline by Cleveland Safety Director Michael McGrath, which could result in their dismissal from the department.
Loehmann’s disciplinary letter cites his failure to reveal in an application that the Independence (Ohio) Police Department, where he had worked previously, had placed a letter in his personnel file saying that he had an “inability to emotionally function.” Garmback’s disciplinary letter accuses him of driving too close to Tamir and failing to report the time of arrival at the rec center, the newswire reports.
Samaria Rice has called for both officers to be fired.
Read more at ABC News.