The city of Cleveland apologized on Thursday for its role in preparing a $500 ambulance services claim against the estate of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who was fatally shot by police in 2014, and said it had dropped the demand.
City officials said a claim had actually been filed in probate court and that it had now been withdrawn. They said they never intended to bill the Rice family, according to a statement from Mayor Frank Jackson.
The invoice, dated Wednesday, is for Rice’s “last dying expense” and included $450 for an ambulance and $50 for mileage, according to city documents.
“Again, apologizing to the Rice family if in fact this has added to any grief or pain that they may have,” Jackson told reporters.
Rice, a black child who was playing with a replica gun in a park, was shot by a white police officer. The child’s death helped fuel the national debate over police use of deadly force, especially against minorities.
After the Rice killing, a U.S. Justice Department investigation found widespread excessive use of force by Cleveland police. The next day, the Rice family filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city and officers involved.
In January 2015, the city received a partial reimbursement from Medicaid for $172.90 for ambulance services for Rice, the statement said. The remaining $327.10 was absorbed by the city and the matter closed, the city said.
Earlier this week, the executor for Rice’s estate asked the city to provide a billing statement for services provided to Rice.
When the city got the request, the bill was opened again and sent to the executor, Jackson’s office said. Following standard procedure, a city attorney filed a claim with the probate court for $500 against the Rice estate. On Thursday, the city withdrew its claim.
Jackson said “red flags should have risen” to prevent the claim from being filed.
“But that didn’t happen. Did anybody do anything wrong in this? No, because it’s the normal process.”
Rice family attorney Subodh Chandra said in a statement that the claim made no sense to the family. “This adds insult to homicide.”
A grand jury in December declined to bring criminal charges against the officers involved in the shooting.
Earlier on Thursday, U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton tweeted: “Asking Tamir’s family to pay for his ambulance is heartless. Cleveland should drop this fee.”
(Reporting by Suzannah Gonzales and Mary Wisniewski in Chicago; Writing by Fiona Ortiz; Editing by Bill Trott and Matthew Lewis)
Trump said he wouldn’t cut Medicare — now he says it could be a fun ‘second term project’
It's unclear if President Donald Trump is trying to lose the 2020 election or he's simply spitballing with right-wing conservatives, but his latest idea is to gut Medicare in his second term according to the New York Times.
During the 2016 campaign there were at least six occasions in which Trump promised he would protect Medicare.
‘It’s always dread with President Trump’: CNN analyst says G7 leaders are revolted they have to meet with Trump again
On Thursday's edition of CNN's "The Situation Room," reporter Abby Phillip said that world leaders are feeling "dread" about the prospect of meeting with President Donald Trump after his latest round of erratic behavior on the world stage.
"There is a big test on foreign relations for President Trump this weekend," said host Brianna Keilar. "He's going to the G7. He, Abby, is headed there after insulting Denmark by pulling out of a state visit, keeping in mind that Denmark is a key intel and military ally of the U.S. What is the mood going into this forum?"
"Honestly, it's always dread with President Trump," said Phillip.
5.0 earthquake strikes Ridgecrest, California — two months after 7.1
Two months after the 7.1 earthquakes that hit outside of Los Angeles, another more modest quake was detected, ABC-7 reported.
While the location of the quake was about 20 miles north of Ridgecrest, California, at the Naval Air Warfare Center China Lake. People as far away as Clark County, Nevada also felt the rumble Thursday afternoon.
It left several people asking if it was considered a foreshock or a really late aftershock from two months ago.