Timothy Loehmann is the man who shot 12-year-old Tamir Rice less than two seconds after arriving on the scene of a Cleveland playground (the police cruiser was still moving).
Loehmann is the guy who’d been on the job in the Cleveland PD only eight months before killing Tamir, and who had to leave his previous job as a cop because he was deemed “unfit for duty.”
Loehmann is the dude, who, after shooting Tamir (a 6th grader mind you), worked with his partner, Frank Garmback, to tackle the boy’s sister Tajai and hold her down so that she could not comfort her baby brother as he lay bleeding and sputtering his last helpless breaths on a cold playground.
Loehmann is the idiot who was fired from the Cleveland Police department for lying about how he lost his last job, a job where his bosses described him thus:
“He could not follow simple directions, could not communicate clear thoughts nor recollections, and his handgun performance was dismal,” wrote Independence, Ohio, Deputy Police Chief Jim Polak in July 2012.
Polak also wrote, “I do not believe time, nor training, will be able to change or correct the deficiencies.”
But despite all this, guess what Timothy Loehmann got on Friday? Yep, you guessed it. Timothy Loehmann was actually hired as a cop again.
Only in America … could a white man, such a dangerously incompetent fuck up, fail up this many times.
But Samaria Rice—Tamir and Tajai’s mother—was not about to let Loehmann’s appalling ineptitude fly. This week, she let media outlets know that she planned to travel to the rural town of Bellaire, Ohio, (population 4,278), to protest Loehmann’s employment.
“I plan to go down to Bellaire to have a conversation with that police department and say, ‘You guys are making a big mistake,’” Rice said to Mic.
But before she could do that, Loehmann withdrew his application.
“As of this afternoon, Timothy Loehmann has withdrawn his application in Bellaire,” Rice said during a news conference Wednesday afternoon, according to News5 Cleveland. “Hopefully, he will not be hired as a police officer by any other state.”
Perhaps it was the threat of protests, or Rice’s social media campaign with Black Lives Matter Cleveland calling on folks to raise holy hell with Bellaire’s Mayor and Police Department.
Bellaire Police Chief Dick Flanagan (yes, he’s a cop named Dick Flanagan) told the Times Leader on Friday that he had no reservations about hiring Loehmann despite the fact he had been essentially fired by not one, but two, police departments. Oh, and killed a child while on duty.
“He was cleared of any and all wrongdoing,” Flanagan said. “He was never charged. It’s over and done with.”
Typical behavior, said LaToya Goldsby, head of BLM Cleveland and Tamir’s cousin.
“Police unions, police chiefs and police departments will always side with police,” said Goldsby to Mic. “We have to stay vigilant in our communities and others so that police officers like Timothy Loehmann don’t continue to get employment in other cities after they have committed murder in another.”
At that time of Flanagan’s announcement, Samaria Rice said she feared Loehmann’s proven incompetence put the public at risk.
“He is emotionally unstable and mentally unstable,” she said.
Mic reports that Rice has spent the last 10 months doing everything she could to prevent Loehmann from getting his old job back after he filed a union grievance in January for his termination. She told the outlet that she feared that this part-time job in Bellaire was the first stop to coming back to the Cleveland PD.
She also said she felt gutted at Loehmann’s new job offer.
“I fell to my knees,” she said. “I just had to hold myself and call on the Lord. I’m still in shock right now ... my youngest daughter fell out. My oldest daughter was crying. I have an angry son who was not happy. I’m very hurt and upset about that situation.”
“How many times does a family have to keep being re-traumatized?” she asked.
Now, I’m not saying that Timothy Loehmann should never work again.
In fact, if this were a just world, he would be slinging hash behind bars for .02 cents an hour.
But alas, him being a white man in America, none of that happened. He was just offered another job as a cop … but didn’t start because of the heat.
Let it burn.