"After viewing it several times, this court is still thunderstruck by how quickly this event turned deadly," stated Cleveland, Ohio Municipal Court Judge Adrine in his opinion on Thursday, June 11, 2015 reviewing the video from inside the police car of the officers involved in the shooting death of Tamir Rice. Judge Adrine issued a ruling finding probable cause for indictments on murder, involuntary manslaughter, reckless homicide, negligent homicide and dereliction of duty charges against Cleveland Police Officer Timothy Loehman and indictments of negligent homicide and dereliction of duty charges against Cleveland Police Officer Frank Garmback in the death of 12 year old Tamir Rice. Judge Adrine did not find probable cause for charges of aggravated murder against either officer.
The case is now in front of the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty with the Judge's ruling adding pressure upon him for indictments on the named charges. This is CHANGE. It is slow, with tiny steps and uncertain outcomes. It must not be sen to be enough, nor must the pressure stop. Racism leads to violence and needless death everywhere but with a MLB sports team showing a racist identity and mascot in front of home town fans, city leaders, the entire police force and legal system daily is it any surprise that the racists in Northeastern Ohio feel they have the support of the entire community leadership? The support may be subtle, sometimes barely a wink and a nod but the team is sending out a silent message of approval to all those racists who cling to their discredited, false and horrible beliefs.
Will justice prevail in Cleveland? Time will tell. but until the team changes the city and the team carry support for racism and racist beliefs into the world, into the stadiums wherever they play and on any screen they reach. It is time for REAL change--a new team name, a new team mascot. Cleveland, Ohio--you can and must do and be better.