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Cop Who Killed Tamir Rice Failed Cognitive Exam For Sheriff Deputy Job

During a job hunt that last more than a year, Officer Timothy Loehmann was rejected from multiple Cleveland area police departments.
January 9, 2015, 5:35pm
Photo by AP/Tony Dejak

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The Cleveland police officer who shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice on a playground in November had previously failed a written cognitive exam for sheriff recruits in the country, according to records from the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department made public on Wednesday.

Despite passing the physical exam, which consisted of 27 pushups and other challenges, Officer Timothy Loehmann took the written Cuyahoga county department's test in September 2013 and garnered a score of 46 percent, which falls short of the 70 percent needed to pass. The exam evaluates areas like vocabulary, grammar, and problem solving, according to a report from the Cleveland Plain-Dealer. The information was made public on Wednesday following a public records request.

Loehmann ultimately did not receive a job offer for sheriff deputy from the department, while he was also rejected from jobs in Cleveland area police departments in Akron, Euclid, and Parma Heights. The 26-year-old's job hunt spanned from when he left a police department in Independence, Ohio in November 2012 — a saga which was revealed in a previous public document dump following the deadly shooting — until he was hired by the city of Cleveland's department in March of 2014.

The documents released by Independence revealed that Loehmann had been described as "weepy," and was found unfit for police duty by a senior officer at the city's department during his five month tenure there.

Loehmann shot and killed Rice on November 22 after he and another police officer reported to the playground to follow up on a 911 call about a boy carrying an Airsoft pellet gun, although the emergency dispatcher did not communicate to the cops that it appeared to be a toy. Both Rice and his accompanying officer, 46-year-old Frank Garmback, have been placed on administrative leave.