Samaria Rice: I'm still waiting for an apology for the shooting of my son

RAW: Tami Rice response to the City
Tamir Rice's mother speaks during a January 6, 2015 news conference. (Source: WOIO)
Tamir Rice's mother speaks during a January 6, 2015 news conference. (Source: WOIO)
Tamir Rice's family responds to the city. (Source: WOIO)
Tamir Rice's family responds to the city. (Source: WOIO)

Samaria Rice, the mother of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, says she is still waiting for an apology from the Cleveland Police Department after the shooting death of her son.

Tamir was playing with a pellet gun outside a Cleveland rec center on Nov. 22, 2014 when Officer Timothy Loehmann responded to a report of someone with a gun at that scene. Surveillance video showed Loehmann shot Tamir within two seconds of his car stopping.

Friday, the City of Cleveland filed a response to the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the Rice family. The 41-page document states that Tamir Rice caused his own death. In the document, the city says Tamir's death was caused by his failure to "exercise due care to avoid injury," and that Tamir was warned three times before he was shot.

On Monday, Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and Director of Law Barbara Langhenry issued an apology for that response.

"We used words and we phrased things in such a way it was very insensitive," said Mayor Jackson.

Tuesday, Rice's family members and their attorneys Benjamin L. Crump and Walter Madison responded to the city's answer in the wrongful death suit.

During a news conference at Olivet Institutional Baptist Church, Attorney Crump said the city's response to their lawsuit was insulting and disrespectful.

"Cleveland Police disrespected Tamir's family from the moment they arrived at the rec center," said Attorney Crump.

Crump also replayed the surveillance video recorded the day Tamir was shot. He said, "Officers shot Tamir in less than a second and couldn't have shouted a warning three times."

"The police aren't under attack, the institutional behavior is," added attorney Walter Madison.

"We are headed to another grand jury and we better do everything in our power to make sure everybody knows what happened and be as transparent as possible before they head into the secret proceedings of the grand jury where nobody knows what happens," said Crump.

Samaria Rice said the support she's received from across the nation is what has been keeping her standing.

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