State Senator Shirley Smith (D-10) will have to answer for remarks that fueled racial tensions in Cleveland over the shooting of Brandon McCloud in Sept. 2005.
McCloud was 15 and a suspect in several robberies of eastside pizza deliverymen at knife point. While serving a warrant for him at his grandparents home, Detectives Philip Habeeb and John Kraynik located the suspect in his bedroom closet brandishing a knife. Refusing to cooperate and threatening Habeeb & Kraynick with the knife, McCloud was shot 10 times during the ensuing scuffle.
There were several police shootings in 2005, but this one took a life of its' own. Much to the dismay of relatives and activists, preliminary investigations of the shooting ruled it justifiable.
Stoking racial tension that were already near the boiling point, the NAACP wanted a public lynching of the officers, some people were calling it murder and with her election around the corner, Campbell tried to steer clear of the incident.
Though trying to steer clear, Campbell's administration also tried to railroad these officers, by originally having a poltical hack in the CPD investigate the case.
Not missing a beat and adding fuel to the racial tension was State Senator Shirley Smith (D-10). Smith delivered a letter to city officials that she will now need to answer for....
The first sentence reads: "A search warrant is not an execution warrant!"
The letter calls the officers "malicious accurate sharpshooters" and "two death merchants" who turned McCloud's bedroom into an "execution chamber." She suggested the officers be sentenced to life in prison.
An Ohio Court has ruled Smith, even though the letter was written on Statehouse letterhead, was NOT acting in her official capacity. Thus she is not immune from civil action and the lawsuit filed by the detectives against her can proceed.
A politician being held accountable for their words.... this has to be a first!