Tamir Rice’s Autopsy Brings Home Life and Death
Tamir Rice is the 12 year old who was shot and killed in Ohio by a cop who fired his gun in less than 2 seconds of arriving on scene.
A man had called 911 and told dispatch that a guy was in the park who might be a juvenile had a gun that might have been fake, but it was making him nervous. Dispatch put out the call without saying it could be a juvenile and could be a toy gun.
Tamir did not die right away. Reports have it that the EMT’s arrived about 4 minutes after Tamir was shot. He was taken to the hospital where he died the next day.
Tamir’s autopsy was released today. It makes the reality of life and death profound. One bullet can end a life. One bullet can cause suffering before ending a life.
Who was once a playful 12 year old, became a cold, dead body on a slab being examined by a Medical Examiner, even down to the length of the hair on his head. Everything about his young body became an examination and investigation, from drugs to medicine administrated in effort to save his life, to prior surgical procedures, to poop stains on his rectum.
I’m conflicted — seeing that on one-hand, the medical examiner has to do his/her job, while on the other hand, little human decency is afforded to those whose death is under investigation.
A grand jury will convene to decide whether there is probable cause to charge Cleveland police officer Timothy Loehmann. NBC reports that the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s office, which is overseeing the case, has a policy of presenting all fatal police shootings to a grand jury. “These cases are so serious, so important, that there should be a citizen review,” said Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty.
Attorney Benjamin Crump, who is representing Tamir’s parents however, says that there is probable cause to file a charge and take the case to a jury.
Crump has also stated:
“If police officers are ill-equipped to deal with children playing on the playground with toy guns, then we might have to consider outlawing all toy guns because this scenario cannot happen again in America.”
Police officers appear to be given special treatment when grand juries are called to decide probable cause. That special treatment is that they appear to be the only persons of interest who get to give their side of the story to grand juries. If that happens with Timothy Loehmann, he can tell the jurors what he felt, what he believed, his fears and the whole nine-yards in his defense for why and when he pulled the trigger.
However, the grand jury won’t hear what Tamir felt, believed, or feared when, nor after he was shot.