CLEVELAND — The organizer of a rally for Tamir Rice more than two years after his death never showed up Saturday and failed to notify the Rice family the event was taking place.
"We didn’t want folks to come out here to memorialize her [Samaria Rice] son in spirits of uplifting and supporting Mrs. Rice and the family was not involved," said Tamir’s cousin Latonya Goldsby.
The Rice family says they found out about the event through social media. Black Matters planned the rally for the 12-year old who was killed by Cleveland Police who believed the fake gun in his possession was real.
According to the Black Matters website they are a nonprofit news outlet. A separate organization from the Black Lives Matter movement.
The memorial rally took place at the Cudell Recreation Center in Cleveland. Supporters of the Rice family say coming back to the spot Tamir was killed was heartbreaking.
"It’s hard to come back and feel like nothing has changed," said Dana Buzzelli.
"It makes the conflict more real and also kind of reminded me of the ways we haven’t really dealt with this," said Emily Cherney.
In December 2015 a Cuyahoga County grand jury did not indict Cleveland Police officer Timothy Loehmann in the deadly shooting that made national headlines. A civil settlement was reached awarding $6 million to Tamir’s family.
A consent decree was also reached as a part of a larger ongoing investigation by the Department of Justice who found a pattern and practice of excessive force within the Cleveland Police Department that violated people’s civil rights.
The Rice family is asking to meet with U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch before Christmas to discuss the case further. Family members say they have not been contacted by federal authorities recently.
"Two years too long we have encouraged and allowed outside influences to come into our city and change the narrative of our story," said Goldsby.
The gazebo at Cudell was dismantled in September and taken to a Chicago museum where it will be displayed with other items related to deadly police involved shootings.
An internal investigation regarding the two officers involved in Tamir’s shooting has yet to be completed.