Details have emerged in the Tamir Rice case, and they could be potentially explosive. Reports are swirling about that the grand jury overseeing the matter never voted to indict the Cleveland cops that shot and killed the boy.
The Cleveland Scene reports:
The grand jury that opted not to indict Cleveland police officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback in the shooting death of Tamir Rice never actually took a vote on the matter, according to the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office.
What actually happened in the most significant grand jury hearing in county history isn’t quite clear, and the mechanism by which the grand jury “declined to indict” — in Prosecutor Timothy McGinty’s own words — is equally unclear.
At the conclusion of a typical grand jury hearing, there are two possible outcomes achieved via vote: a “true bill,” which results in criminal charges and a case number in the court system, or a “no bill,” which is a decision not to bring charges. A “no-bill notification” is signed and stamped and kept on record at the county clerk’s office.
Though Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty never explicitly said the grand jury voted not to indict — nor did he utter the phrase “no bill” — in his Dec. 28 press conference, he declared that that grand jury had declined to indict.
To add, reporters from the Scene requested court documents showing how the grand jury came to its no-bill decision and was told such a document wasn’t available. Joe Frolik, the communication’s director for McGinty’s office, confirmed to the Scene that the case ended as a no-bill because there was no vote.
Legal experts were also baffled at the investigative panels’s decision not to hold a vote as that’s not a common practice.
Attorney Jonathan S. Abady, who represents mother Samaria Rice, said in a statement that their side was given assurances that a vote would take place. Abady calls the revelation of the news “disturbing and troubling,” adding an uncomfortable instance in the emotionally-charged developments thus far.
Photo: family handout