Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson issued an apology yesterday for the city’s “very insensitive” claim that Tamir Rice was responsible for getting killed by a Cleveland PD officer, reported Salon. However, the damage has been done.
In an attempt to protect all of our defenses, we used words and we phrased things in such a way that was very insensitive. Very insensitive to the tragedy in general, the family, and the victim in particular. It is not part of the character of the city of Cleveland and this administration. So we are apologizing today as a city to the family of Tamir Rice and to the citizens of the city of Cleveland for our poor use of words and our insensitivity in the use of those words.
Jackson’s apology is related to a 41-page report released on Friday that responded to a lawsuit filed by Rice’s family against the city. According to the city’s report, the “Plaintiffs’ decedent’s injuries, losses, and damages complained of, were directly and proximately caused by the failure of Plaintiffs’ decedent to exercise due care to avoid injury.”
The city also argued in the report that Tamir Rice was responsible for his family’s pain and suffering endured after the shooting. The report ventured way beyond the realm of “insensitive” and was outright despicable.
Tamir Rice was murdered in a Cleveland park by Ofr. Tim Loehmann, a trigger-happy cop. Jackson said the city will file an “amended” response to the Rice family’s lawsuit. But, is it too little, too late?
The Rice family has had to endure the loss of Tamir, the anguish it caused, and now the audacity of the city of Cleveland. The city allowed a dangerous man in Loehmann onto the police force, and he murdered a small boy. Cleveland needs to own up to the tragedy and give the Rice family what they are owed.