Cuyahoga County Council members ask McGinty to decide Tamir Rice case

Cuyahoga County Council members ask McGinty to decide Tamir Rice case

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Two of the 11 members of the Cuyahoga County Council have sent a letter to prosecutor Tim McGinty regarding the Tamir Rice case. The letter expressed concern about the ongoing investigation and the grand jury determining if Officer Timothy Loehmann should be indicted.

Tamir was shot by Officer Loehmann outside Cudell Recreation Center on Nov. 22, 2014. He had an airsoft pellet gun, which was mistaken for a real gun, when he was killed.

The group said it respects the role of the grand jury, but wants McGinty to seek an indictment, if there is sufficient evidence.

To put this on a grand jury, "would be highly unusual, and to do so in this instance would be a disservice to the family of Tamir Rice and the concerned citizens of Cuyahoga County," according to the letter.

The family has been asking for a special prosecutor to be assigned to the case. These council members want the same thing.

"If you do not intend to publicly seek indictment before the Grand Jury, we respectfully request that a special prosecutor be appointed to provide the zealous advocacy required to ensure justice is fully served," stated in the letter.

The two members who signed the letter are: Yvonne M. Conwell and Dale Miller.

Prosecutor McGinty responded with the following statement:

"There is obviously some confusion as to the protocol on use of deadly force cases.  Let us clarify:

The Prosecutor's Office will make a recommendation in all cases to the Grand Jury, but it would be wrong to reach any conclusion before an investigation has been completed.  The investigation in this case is ongoing.

We have a duty to pursue an indictment when the law and the Constitution demand.  We will do so.  To ask us to announce a recommendation before the investigation is finished would be  unjust.  Ultimately, no matter which course of action the prosecutor recommends, the citizens on the Grand Jury have the last word in all use of deadly force cases in Cuyahoga County.  I have full faith in the wisdom of the people of this county who will actually hear the witnesses, evaluate the evidence, and apply the law to this case."

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