Family of Tamir Rice upset investigation continues 6 months after killing

WATCH ABOVE:  Tamir Rice’s family expressed frustration after listening to a short update by Cuyahoga County Sheriff Cliff Pinkney on the shooting death of Rice by a Cleveland police officer.

TORONTO – The family of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who was shot and killed by a Cleveland police officer, says they are frustrated with the now six-month investigation in the fatal shooting.

While the majority of the investigation is complete, investigators will need more time to interview witnesses about the shooting of Rice, said Cuyahoga County Sheriff Clifford Pinkney during a Tuesday morning press conference.  The 12-year-old was killed on Nov. 22 outside a Cleveland recreation centre while carrying a pellet gun. He was shot by rookie officer Timothy Loehmann.

“While it would be politically expedient to impose an arbitrary deadline, for the sake of the integrity of this investigation, I’m not willing to do that,” Pinkney told a group of reporters as well as members of the Rice family. “Of course that does not mean that this investigation should drag out beyond what is reasonable.”

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Pinkney said investigators have examined thousands of documents, looked at surveillance video and conducted a number of interviews with witnesses.

Video shows members of the Rice family yelling at Pinkney as he quickly leaves the press conference without taking any questions from reporters.

“I feel so disgusted with the city of Cleveland for not showing some type of compassion for my family,” Latonya Goldsby, a family member of Rice, told reporters.

Goldsby added that she was disappointed the case has taken six months and that family members were not told about the update by the police chief ahead of time.

READ MORE: Cleveland mayor apologizes for suggestion that Tamir Rice to blame for own death

“My family is very disappointed at how this case has transpired. It has taken us six months to get here for them to make this statement,” she said. “We didn’t even know about this announcement today. We found out on the news at 5 p.m.”

The Rice shooting drew international attention after video surveillance footage showed Loehmann, who is white, shooting Tamir within seconds of arriving on scene. Loehmann and his partner were responding to a 911 call about a man carrying a gun.

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It was later revealed Tamir was carrying an  Airsoft-type gun that shoots plastic pellets. In a report by former-U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice found Cleveland police had engaged in a pattern of using excessive force and violating citizen’s civil rights.

*With a file from the Associated Press


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