On Wednesday afternoon, Cleveland, Ohio police released a video showing the shooting death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice at the hands of an officer.
The clip, which contains no sound, shows the 12-year-old boy standing up from a picnic table as police come speeding up to him in a patrol car. Prior to that, reports say that they received a call about a “guy with a gun pointing it at people,” but the caller said more than once he believed the gun was a toy.
The video shows the officer in the passenger’s seat climb out while the vehicle was still in motion and fatally shoot the 12-year-old boy.
Officer Timothy Loehmann, the 26-year-old rookie who shot Rice, claims that he yelled three times prior to shooting the boy for him to put his hands up. The video shows that Rice was shot within 10 feet of Loehmann, and as the driver of the police car Officer Frank Garmback, 46, comes to a stop and gets out of the car, Loehmann can be seen ducking behind it.
Deputy Chief Ed Tomba says that the officers were not informed by the 911 operator that the gun was believed to be a toy, and he maintains that the release of surveillance footage is not to lay blame on anybody.
“This is not an effort to exonerate, it's not an effort to show the public that anybody did anything wrong,” said Tomba in a statement. “This is a tragic event.”
A grand jury will ultimately decide whether or not either of the officers will be charged for Rice’s death, but the release of the video is sure to spark even more outrage from already angry people across the nation.