Prosecutors have presented new findings to a grand jury that will decide whether to indict the police officers involved in the shooting death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, Cleveland reports.
Consultant W. Ken Katsaris, a certified Florida law enforcement officer instructor, called the Nov. 2014 incident tragic, but “objectively reasonable.”
“This unquestionably was a tragic loss of life, but to compound the tragedy by labeling the officers’ conduct as anything but objectively reasonable would also be a tragedy, albeit not carrying with it the consequences of the loss of life, only the possibility of loss of career,” Katsaris wrote. “This decision, in my opinion, was clearly objectively reasonable, given the totality of the circumstances.”
Another vantage point of the video of Rice’s death was shown to the jury to support prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty’s argument that the shooting was reasonable. The surveillance footage shows officer Timothy Loehmann, who shot Tamir, and his partner Frank Garmback arriving at the West Side recreational center. McGinty says Loehmann’s decision to fire his weapon was reasonable because Tamir’s hands were allegedly moving toward his waistband.
After the fatal shooting, the officers realized Rice was a child and the weapon was a replica Colt 911 air-soft gun with plastic pellets.
Katsaris’ report supports the two that were previously released backing Loehmann’s decision to shoot Tamir. Other factors were examined, including the highly scrutinized 911 call. Although the caller told dispatch Tamir was “probably a juvenile” and the gun was “probably fake,” the message was never relayed to the officers. Katsaris believes the details wouldn’t have changed the outcome because if armed, a juvenile can still pose a threat to an officer.
“It is not helpful information because the statement ‘probably a juvenile’ is an approximate possible age range of any age under eighteen (18), which certainly does not in any way diminish the threat potential, and the statements about the firearm are far too ambiguous to be taken as relevant unless the circumstances were clearly different than this situation unfolded,” Katsaris wrote.
Katsaris has worked with the courts in the past. He stood as a consultant during the case of Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo. The officer was acquitted of manslaughter for the Nov. 29, 2012 killing of an unarmed couple at the end of a car chase.
Calling Brelo’s decision “foolish,” he also said the shooting was “objectively reasonable.”
SOURCE: Cleveland | VIDEO CREDIT: Inform
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