Ohio teen with BB gun killed, police say
COLUMBUS, Ohio — A black boy. A white Ohio police officer. A pellet gun that looked like a real weapon. And a deadly shooting.
A Columbus officer responding to a report of a $10 armed robbery shot a 13year-old boy Wednesday night after the teen pulled a BB gun from his waistband that looked “practically identical” to the weapon police use, authorities say.
On the morning after Tyre King’s death, Mayor Andrew Ginther appeared to choke up as he questioned why an eighthgrader would have a replica of a police firearm.
“There is something wrong in this country, and it is bringing its epidemic to our city streets,” he said. “And a 13-year-old is dead in the city of Columbus because of our obsession with guns and violence.”
While the case is under investigation, police and city authorities rejected comparisons to the 2014 killing of 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland.
Columbus officers investigating a robbery report Wednesday spotted three males who matched a description of the suspects, authorities said. Two males ran when officers tried to speak with them.
Police chased the pair into an alley and Tyre pulled out a gun with a laser sight, and an officer fired, hitting the boy repeatedly, police said. Tyre died at a hospital.
The officer was identi- fied as Bryan Mason, a nine-year veteran of the force.
In Tamir’s case, a 911 caller reported someone pointing a gun at people near a recreation center. An officer shot the boy after pulling up in his cruiser. The officer and his partner were cleared of wrongdoing.
The 911 caller had said the person with the gun was probably a juvenile and the weapon was probably fake, but that information was never passed on to officers. Police Chief Kim Jacobs on Thursday displays a photograph of a BB gun like the one eighth-grader Tyre King had.