COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A police officer responding to a reported armed robbery shot and killed a 13-year-old boy who had pulled from his waistband a BB gun that looked “practically identical” to a police weapon, authorities said Thursday.
Because the officer is white and the boy was black, the case has brought comparisons with the 2014 fatal shooting in Cleveland of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who had been playing with a pellet gun outside a recreation center. Columbus police are early in their investigation but say the differences in the Wednesday night shooting of Tyree King and the Cleveland case are stark.
“The only thing similar in nature is the age, race and outcome,” Columbus police spokesman Sgt. Rich Weiner said. “The facts are not similar, and that must be reiterated.”
Officers investigating the armed robbery report on Wednesday east of downtown Columbus spotted three males who matched the descriptions of the suspects, authorities said. Two of the males ran away when officers tried to speak with them.