"No Such Thing as Closure": Tamir Rice's Family Settles for $6M with Cleveland
"Although historic in financial terms, no amount of money can adequately compensate for the loss of a life," the family's attorneys said on Monday
The family of Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy who was shot to death by police while playing in a park in November 2014, has settled a federal lawsuit with the city of Cleveland for $6 million.
"Although historic in financial terms, no amount of money can adequately compensate for the loss of a life," the family's attorneys said in a statement on Monday. "Nothing will bring Tamir back. His unnecessary and premature death leaves a gaping hole for those who knew and loved him that can never be filled."
The settlement, which admits no wrongdoing on the city's part, also lets Cleveland officials off the hook in a federal civil rights lawsuit brought by Rice's family over the death of the "young boy, with his entire life ahead of him, full of potential and promise."
Rice's estate will receive $5.5 million. His mother, Samaria Rice, and his sister, Tajai Rice, will each receive $250,000.
Rice, who is black, was killed by a white police officer who opened fire immediately after pulling up to a park where the 12-year-old boy was playing with a toy gun on November 22, 2014. In December, a grand jury chose not to indict Officer Timothy Loehmann or his partner Frank Garmback on criminal charges.
Monday's settlement follows a series of similar payouts to relatives of unarmed black men and women killed by police in recent months. The city of New York in July 2015 finalized a $5.9 million settlement with the family of Eric Garner, who was killed when a white police officer placed him in an illegal chokehold. That officer was subsequently also cleared of indictments.
"In a situation such as this, there is no such thing as closure or justice," Rice's family's attorneys stated on Monday. "Regrettably, Tamir's death is not an isolated event. The problem of police violence, especially in communities of color, is a crisis plaguing our nation."
They concluded: "It is the Rice family's sincere hope that Tamir's death will stimulate a movement for genuine change in our society and our nation's policing so that no family ever has to suffer a tragedy such as this again."