A white Cleveland police officer was justified in fatally shooting a black 12-year-old boy holding a pellet gun moments after pulling up beside him, according to two outside reviews conducted at the request of the prosecutor investigating the death.
A retired FBI agent and a Denver prosecutor both found the rookie patrolman who shot Tamir Rice exercised a reasonable use of force because he had reason to perceive the boy -- described in an emergency call as a man waving and pointing a gun -- as a serious threat.
The reports were released Saturday night by the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office, which asked for the outside reviews as it presents evidence to a grand jury that will ultimately determine whether Timothy Loehmann will be charged in the death of Tamir last November.
"We are not reaching any conclusions from these reports," Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty said in a statement. "The gathering of evidence continues, and the grand jury will evaluate it all."
He said the reports, which included a technical reconstruction by the Ohio State Highway Patrol, were released in the interests of being "as public and transparent as possible."
For those who may have forgotten exactly what happened on that November day back in 2014, here is the surveillance video of the event. (Most the tape just shows Tamir walking around playing with his toy, the killing takes place around the 7:10 mark.)
It should be noted that the 9-11 caller who phoned the police reported that Rice was "possibly a juvenile" and that the weapon was "probably fake."
And yet seconds after arriving they shot this young man down in cold blood.
We live in a country where white men can safely walk the streets wearing assault rifles strapped to their bodies like over sized jewelry and yet a young boy playing with a toy gun is murdered in cold blood by the police.
And people wonder why a group like Black Live Matter exists in the world today.