The Cleveland Police officer who shot twelve-year-old Tamir Rice had a documented history of failure in a prior department:
Records from the Independence Police Departmentt obtained by CNN include comments from a supervisor detailing what they called “a pattern of lack of maturity, indiscretion and not following instructions,” a “dangerous loss of composure during live range training” and an “inability to manage personal stress.
“I do not believe time, nor training, will be able to change or correct these deficiencies,” Independence Deputy Chief Jim Polak wrote in a November 2012 memo.
Astonishingly, Cleveland officers never looked at Loehmann’s personnel file from Independence:
Loehmann joined the Cleveland Police Department in March. A Cleveland Police spokesman said Thursday that during a background check before hiring Loehmann, his department didn’t review the officer’s personnel file from Independence, a suburb south of the city. Detectives did speak with the Independence human resources director, the spokesman said.
What did actual police officers – not an HR director – think of Loehmann? They thought he was unfit (emphasis added):
According to the records, Loehmann worked at the Independence Police Department as an officer until December 2012, when he submitted his resignation “for personal reasons” after he was told that a disciplinary process of separation had begun.
“Ptl. Loehmann’s inability to perform basic functions as instructed, and his inability to emotionally function because of a personal situation at home with an on and off again girlfriend leads one to believe that he would not be able to substantially cope, or make good decisions, during or resulting from any other stressful situation,” Polak wrote.
Another memo from a sergeant who worked with Loehmann at a shooting range described the officer as “distracted,” “not fit to return” after an emotional outburst and someone who was “not following simple instructions”.
Here’s the memo from Independence’s Deputy Chief, Jim Polak, describing Officer Loehmann’s utter unsuitability for policing: