St. Louis Police Post On Facebook "Advice" About The Cleveland Shooting Of Tamir Rice, Then Delete It
On Thursday morning, the St. Louis Police Department apparently posted on Facebook about the Cleveland shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice earlier this month. Cleveland has seen bitter protests following the death of Rice, who was fatally shot by Cleveland police officer Timothy A. Loehmann while playing with a Airsoft replica gun missing its orange "safe" cap. The St. Louis County Police Department, of course, is no stranger to being in the spotlight of a national conversation on police violence: it was this department, of course, that employed Darren Wilson and used unnecessarily violent tactics on Ferguson protesters in the days and weeks afterwards.
It's unclear whether the Facebook post was legitimately written and uploaded by a member of the department; Anonymous, after all, hacked into the Cleveland city website shortly after Rice's death. It's labeled "Kids Will Be Kids?" and advises parents to ensure their kids don't play with guns that look like real firearms, and ensure the orange safety cap is visible if they do.
Officer Loehmann said he had "no choice" but to shoot the 12-year-old, according to Loehmann's father, who spoke to the Washington Post, since it appeared that Rice was reaching for a firearm. (When speaking to his department, he revealed he thought Rice was roughly 20.)