Tag Archives: Frank Garmback

City of Cleveland Apologizes for Sending Ambulance Bill to Tamir Rice’s Family

One day after sending the family of Tamir Rice a “last dying expense” bill, the city of Cleveland has issued an apology and stated that the move was unintentional.

The city of Cleveland filed a creditor’s claim on Wednesday, which sought to receive payment from the estate of Tamir Rice for emergency services rendered after he was shot by Cleveland Police Officer Timothy Loehmann.

The creditor’s claim, for $500, was for “owing for emergency medical services rendered as the decedent’s last dying expense under Ohio Revised Code §2117.25(A)(5),” according to city documents provided by multiple news outlets.

The claim shows a bill for services including “Ambulance Advance Life Support” and for mileage.

Creditor's Claim by WKYC.com

Rice, 12, was shot by Loehmann on November 22, 2014 at the Cudell Recreation Center, following a 911 call from an individual who reported a person holding a gun that was “probably fake.” That detail was not relayed to police, and Loehmann shot Rice, who was in possession of a plastic pellet gun, within seconds of arriving at the scene.

(Read more about the case here.)

Multiple reports from various news organizations including Cleveland.com state that after Rice was shot, he laid on the ground for several minute as the officers stood around nearby before a passerby, identifying himself as an FBI agent, began to administer first aid to Rice. Rice’s sister, Tajai, witnessed the shooting and had been handcuffed and placed in the police cruiser as Rice remained on the ground.

The video below shows the aftermath of the shooting.

The FBI agent was also a trained paramedic, and he told Cleveland.com that he arrived at the scene after he heard information on his radio about a shooting that had taken place. The agent also said that Loehmann and Garmback “wanted to do something, but they didn’t know what to do.” Cleveland.com noted that the FBI agent described a grisly scene, as Rice’s “intestines were exposed through a wound to the torso.”

Subodh Chandra, the attorney for the Rice family, condemned the city’s choice to send a bill and pursue payment through a creditor’s claim. “The callousness, insensitivity, and poor judgment required for the city to send a bill—its own police officers having slain 12-year-old Tamir—is breathtaking. This adds insult to homicide. The Rice family considers this a form of harassment,” Chandra said in a statement.

Following Chandra’s statement, Cleveland city officials are now saying that the bill has been withdrawn.

According to CBS News, “Mayor Frank Jackson and other city officials apologized to the family Thursday and told the media that the filing was made to Rice’s medical insurance company as part of a routine procedure, but the bill was not intended to be sent to the Rice family.”

“No intent or no sending of a bill to the Tamir Rice family. Medicaid paid their portion; we closed the account and absorbed the rest. When the state asked for the information.. then it generated the other side of the process that reopened it, and sent that bill to the state,” Jackson said in a press conference Thursday, according to news station Fox8 in Cleveland.

Family Of Tamir Rice Criticizes Stalled Investigation As Cleveland Police Seek To Halt Lawsuit

Cleveland, OH- Family and attorneys representing Tamir Rice spoke publicly on Monday about the delayed investigation of Tamir’s death.

Five months have passed since Tamir was shot and killed by Cleveland Police Officer Timothy Loehmann. The investigation is reportedly still ongoing, and no indication has been made by officials about when it will reach its end.

Meanwhile attorneys for Loehmann and his partner who was at the scene of Tamir’s death, Officer Frank Garmback, asked a federal judge late last month to halt a lawsuit that was filed against the officers and other city employees.

“Defendants are being pro-active in seeking to protect their Fifth Amendment rights and ability to defend this civil action vigorously in this Court, so that they can answer the complaint and testify at their civil deposition without fear that their answers may be used against them in a separate criminal proceeding, where the stakes are significantly higher and their liberty is directly at risk,” stated the motion.

Tamir’s family filed a motion on Monday objecting to the request, stating that the officers will be able to invoke their Fifth Amendment rights during deposition and trial.

The motion claims that delays in the lawsuit will harm their case and “The Sheriff’s investigation is apparently going to continue indefinitely has it has been five (5) months and there is no end in sight,” states the motion.

The motion goes on to outline several reasons to move forward with the lawsuit, including a claim that memories of eyewitnesses are likely to fade as more time passes and that those witnesses may eventually leave the area, “which poses the danger of prejudice both in terms of the loss of critical evidence and also in terms of added costs associated with securing that evidence.”

The motion notes that the family has not yet buried Tamir. “Tamir Rice has yet to be laid to final rest. Plaintiffs are incurring expense daily and are unsure if they can finally rest Tamir Rice due to the pending investigation. A stay would exacerbate this expense and emotional distress,” states the motion.

The family is requesting a hearing in front of Chief U.S. District Judge Solomon Oliver Jr. Samaria has since moved into a homeless shelter “because she could no longer live next door to the killing field of her son,” according to the motion.

Full video of the family’s press conference on Monday can be seen here.

For more information about the shooting of Tamir Rice, click here.

Lawsuit Response: City Claims Tamir Rice’s Death Was Caused By His Own Actions

Cleveland, OH- The city of Cleveland, in response to the 71-page lawsuit filed by the family of Tamir Rice on January 30th, has claimed that the death of Tamir Rice and the subsequent injuries suffered by his family were “directly and proximately caused by the acts of Plaintiffs’ decedent.” Among the city’s 20 defenses in its answer to the family’s civil complaint was the assertion that the 12-year-old’s death was “caused by the failure of Plaintiffs’ decedent to exercise due care to avoid injury.”

In Cleveland’s answer to the complaint, it was noted that the city was unable to respond in full due to the ongoing police investigation into the incident. The investigation is currently being conducted by the Cuyahoga County sheriff’s office, and it’s unknown when that investigation will be completed.

Tamir was shot and killed by Cleveland police officer Timothy Loehmann last November after a person dialed 911 reporting somebody with a “probably fake” gun. Tamir had a pellet gun in his possession. Surveillance video surfaced soon after the shooting, showing that Tamir was shot within two seconds of the arrival of Loehmann and his partner, Frank Garmback.

The family of Tamir Rice had originally filed a lawsuit in December 2014, but filed a larger amended lawsuit a month later after new details had emerged. The lawsuit made references to a Justice Department report of the Cleveland Police Department, released on December 4th, 2014, that had concluded that the agency believed the CPD “engages in a pattern or practice of the use of excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution.” Also in the amended lawsuit was the aftermath of the shooting of Tamir when his 14-year-old sister, Tajai, was tackled and thrown to the ground by police before being handcuffed and placed in a cruiser ten feet away from her dying brother.

The Rice family’s suit also included information about Loehmann, the officer who shot and killed Tamir Rice. Before joining the CPD, Loehmann was employed by the Independence Police Department, and personnel files from his time there revealed that he had been recommended to be released from the department due to documented “emotional perplexity” and an inability to properly handle firearms. During Loehmann’s firearm training he was found to be “distracted and weepy” and “could not follow simple directions, could not communicate clear thoughts nor recollections, and his handgun performance was dismal.” Loehmann was described as “not mature enough in his accepting of responsibility or his understanding in the severity of his loss of control on the range” and his superior felt that further training would not correct his behavior. Cleveland police admitted that they never saw the files before hiring Loehmann.

Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association President Steve Loomis described Tamir Rice last week as “menacing” and has defended Officers Loehmann and Garmback while dismissing the media’s scrutiny of Loehmann’s personnel file as a “sideshow”. “There’s this perception that police just slid up in the car and shot him. That’s not reality from the officers’ perception. They acted based on what they knew at the time,” Loomis said regarding the officers’ actions.

“Tamir Rice is in the wrong,” he said. “He’s menacing. He’s 5-feet-7, 191 pounds. He wasn’t that little kid you’re seeing in pictures. He’s a 12-year-old in an adult body. Tamir looks to his left and sees a police car. He puts his gun in his waistband. Those people- 99 percent of the time those people run away from us. We don’t want him running into the rec center. That could be a whole other set of really bad events. They’re trying to flush him into the field. Frank [the driver] is expecting the kid to run. The circumstances are so fluid and unique.”

Walter Madison, an attorney for the Rice family, said that the city’s response to the lawsuit is “incredulous at best. It’s unbelievable.”

“What the city officials have done for a 12-year-old is set a new standard for children in their response, and all of that assumes that they’re not responsible for hiring this guy who was emotionally unfit to be a police officer,” Madison said.


More information about the shooting of Tamir Rice is available here.