Tamir Rice would have celebrated his 19th birthday on Friday
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Friday marks what would have been Tamir Rice’s 19th birthday.
Rice, who was born on June 25, 2002, was carrying an Airsoft pellet gun when he was shot by Cleveland police on Nov. 22, 2014. He died from the gunshot wound a day later on Nov. 23, 2014.
He was 12 years old at the time.
Officer Timothy Loehmann fired on Rice at Cudell Recreation Center playground after witnesses told police that they saw the African-American boy waving around the gun that appeared authentic.
Cleveland police deemed the shooting “reasonable and within guidelines.”
Loehmann was eventually fired from the department in May 2017; not for his role in the shooting, but for lying on a portion of his hiring application.
Officer Frank Garmback, who drove the police cruiser with Loehmann to the scene, served a suspension for his role in the incident.
Some took to social media to share tributes to Rice on what would have been his birthday.
Since the shooting, Rice has become a national symbol of police brutality against African-Americans. His name and face have been memorialized on clothes, highlighted in works of art, and featured in a poem penned by George Clooney.
Rice’s mother, Samaria, also founded the Tamir Rice Foundation, which “invests in the growth and enrichment of all children through after-school programs in arts and culture.”
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