TIOGA, PA — Former Cleveland Police Officer Timothy Loehmann has been hired as the one and only officer of Tioga, a small borough in Pennsylvania with a population of around 700 people, according to Mayor David Wilcox.
Wilcox said he was unaware of Loehmann's background as hiring and firing is done by borough council—something the mayor said the council president led him to believe had been done and there were no issues.
The mayor said he sat in on Loehmann's interview and his time in Cleveland came up but nothing was ever mentioned about his role in Tamir Rice's death.
Council unanimously approved Loehmann's hiring at $18 per hour. He was hired on a 90-day probationary period, and according to the mayor, the intention was to promote him to chief after a successful period.
The hiring prompted dozens of protesters to express their displeasure with council's decision.
The former Cleveland officer was one of three candidates being considered by the town. Wilcox said he never saw Loehmann's resume.
"I was not allowed to take his resume or look into his background," the mayor said.
Wilcox said Loehmann has yet to work a shift—and he won't—until this is all cleared up. The mayor said he's urging council to meet and discuss Loehmann's past and what happens next.
Loehmann was briefly hired as a part-time officer by the police department for the small Ohio village of Bellaire in 2018, but shortly after reports of Loehmann's new job surfaced, he withdrew his application.
“As of this afternoon, Timothy Loehmann has withdrawn his application in Bellaire," Rice's mother Samaria Rice said during a news conference in October of 2018. "Hopefully, he will not be hired as a police officer by any other state.”
RELATED: Officer who killed Tamir Rice withdraws application to Bellaire Police Department
Loehmann is the officer who shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir in 2014. Tamir was playing with a pellet gun outside a recreation center when he was shot by Loehmann.
Loehmann was fired by the Cleveland Division of Police in 2017, more than two years after the fatal shooting, for lying on his application and violating other administrative policies.
City officials charged Loehmann for failing to provide truthful information on his application. Officials said they discovered Loehmann was in the process of being fired from his previous department for his “lack of maturity” and an incident involving an emotional meltdown during firearm training, according to Cleveland police.
Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association President Jeff Follmer issued the following statement regarding Loehmann being brought on as an officer by another department:
"Timothy Loehmann was cleared of all charges with his use of force. The only administrative charges after a civilian review was that he was found to have allegedly lied on his application. Timothy Loehmann was not given a fair chance in this area and deserves a fair chance in another city."
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