CLEVELAND (AP) – The father of a Cleveland policeman who fatally shot a 12-year-old says the officer thought the boy’s pellet gun was a real firearm and said he had no choice.
The Nov. 22 shooting of Tamir Rice by 26-year-old police rookie Tim Loehmann sparked protests in the area. Surveillance video shows Loehmann firing within 2 seconds of a patrol car stopping near Tamir, who reached in his waistband for what turned out to be a pellet gun.
Loehmann’s father, Fred Loehmann, tells the Northeast Ohio Media Group that the officer didn’t know how young the boy was.
He says his son is doing “pretty well” but that the family has received threats since police identified Loehmann.
Through their lawyer’s spokesman, Tamir’s relatives declined to comment on any details about Loehmann.
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