The "hacktivist" group Anonymous has added its voice to those outraged over the shooting death of 12-year-old Cleveland boy Tamir Rice over the weekend, the New York Daily News reports.
According to the Daily News, the group has taken credit for shutting down Cleveland's government website on Monday. It also sent out a video message to the police, blaming Tamir's death on the lack of appropriate training.
"This rookie officer apparently was not trained," Anonymous said in the video. "The police department he works for is to blame for this lack of appropriate training. Officers are equipped with many nonlethal options such as Taser guns. Why did he not use a Taser on this child? Shooting him in cold blood was not necessary with these nonlethal options available."
The man who called 911 had told officers that although Tamir was "scaring the s—t" out of passersby by pulling his gun, the weapon was "probably fake." However, after arriving on the scene, an officer fired twice into the young boy's torso after Tamir allegedly pulled out the BB gun, although he did not point it at the officers or make any verbal threats.
Tamir's father, Gregory Henderson, also questioned why officers did not use nonlethal force on his son. "Why not tase him?" Henderson told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "You shot him twice, not once, and at the end of the day, you all don't shoot for the legs, you shoot for the upper body.
"Who would have thought he would go so soon?" Henderson added.
However, according to the Plain Dealer, Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association President Jeff Folmer said that officers aren't trained to shoot in the leg. "We're not trained to shoot people in the leg," he said. "If we pull that trigger, we feel our lives are in danger."