Woman charged with murder of Cleveland officer pleaded guilty to violent robbery previously without jail time

Published: Jan. 3, 2022 at 11:14 PM EST
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - 19 News investigators uncovering alarming new information about the pair accused in the carjacking turned murder of an off-duty police officer.

Back in November, 19 News reported on an armed robbery at Happy’s Pizza on Detroit Avenue in Cleveland’s Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood, not far from Kamm’s Corners.

The employees at that pizzeria were terrorized at gunpoint by two men and a woman.

That woman was Tamara McLoyd – the same woman now charged with that 25-year-old Cleveland police officer’s murder.

Police say the 18-year-old Garfield Heights woman approached off-duty Cleveland officer Shane Bartek in the parking lot of an apartment complex on Rocky River Drive on New Year’s Eve.

Authorities say she shot and killed the officer after a struggle, but this isn’t the first-time police believe McLoyd has committed a violent crime.

On Nov. 2, three suspects broke into Happy’s Pizza through the back door and ambushed two women working at the front.

According to the arrest warrants we obtained, the woman involved was also Tamara McLoyd.

During the robbery, the two female employees were pistol-whipped and one of them strip-searched.

19 News is told the suspects also stole an employee’s gun.

Court records show a search of another suspect’s cell phone turned up photos of McLoyd in the same exact clothing in the Happy’s Pizza surveillance video.

She was also seen holding the pizza shop employee’s stolen gun.

McLoyd has been wanted on the aggravated robbery charge since Nov. 9, but it wasn’t until after officer Bartek’s murder, that McLoyd was taken into custody on New Year’s Day.

In April 2021, McLoyd was arrested in Lorain County for aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery and kidnapping.

She pleaded guilty to complicity in a robbery in that case in Lorain.

So, we wanted to know, why wasn’t McLoyd locked up in Lorain County?

19 investigator Kelly Kennedy called the courts to find out, trying to learn more about why McLoyd was out on the streets.

The Lorain County domestic relations court administrator told us she cannot comment specifically on why McLoyd was not in custody, but she did send us court documents that show McLoyd was sentenced to three to four years in prison, but the court ultimately ended up saying McLoyd didn’t have to serve time as long as she stayed out of trouble during her five year probation period.

There is still more, according to Strongsville police.

McLoyd was also arrested for driving a getaway car following a theft from Dillards in Berea in October 2021.

Police issued another warrant for her arrest when she didn’t show up in court for her arraignment.

19 News obtained McLoyd’s juvenile rap sheet in Cuyahoga County. It is eight pages long – dating back to 2017.

Her crimes include unauthorized use of a vehicle, driving with a suspended license, assault, criminal damage to property, and domestic violence.

Another suspect, Anthony Butler Junior is said to have been behind the wheel in the officer’s murder.

Butler also has a criminal background.

19 News discovered in December of 2020 the 28-year-old was charged with a felony for receiving stolen property.

He also had drug and gun charges on his record.

He had 12 previous criminal cases in Cuyahoga County where he pled guilty to grand theft eight times.

19 News also received documents from the Lorain County sheriff’s office detailing McLoyd’s juvenile detention records.

Butler is being held on a $5 million bond for receiving stolen property and fleeing police after a chase and crash in Euclid.

McLoyd is also being held on a $5 million bond, but for aggravated murder.

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