What, I wonder, made Tim Loehmann suddenly fit for duty again? Did he have a magical epiphany or was it just that Cleveland needed some more cops?
"He could not follow simple directions, could not communicate clear thoughts nor recollections, and his handgun performance was dismal," Independence Deputy Chief Jim Polak wrote in a letter on November 29, 2012, according to records obtained by the Northeast Ohio Media Group. "For these reasons, I am recommending he be released from the employment of the city of Independence. I do not believe time, nor training, will be able to change or correct these deficiencies."
Polak also wrote that he believed there would certain situations during which Loehmann would "not react in the way instructed."
The Independence report details a host of issues with Loehmann's performance as an officer during his short stint with the department.
Loehmann's troubles began in 2012 while he attended the Cleveland Heights Police Academy. An issue with an on-again, off-again girlfriend caused Loehmann distress and, in one case, he fell asleep during training, according to a written report from Independence Police Sgt. Greg Tinnirello.
Loehmann told Tinnirello that he cried often about his personal issue during training and Loehmann's mother told Tinnierello that her son's study papers "would be soaked in tears nightly for three months."
On Nov. 26, 2012, Loehmann was ordered to stay in the Independence police dispatch center. Loehmann left without authorization and lied to Tinnierello that the dispatchers told him he could leave, the letter says.
Loehmann eventually admitted to lying.
The problems at Independence erupted on Nov. 28, 2012, the records say. Loehmann showed up "sleepy and upset" for a 6 a.m. state gun qualification session.
Tinnierello wrote that Loehmann "was distracted and was not following simple instructions" at the shooting range.
At one point, he went to the back of the range to reload his magazine and could not return to the line where he was supposed to shoot from, Tinnierello wrote. Loehmann appeared to be crying and was emotionally upset so Tinnierello said they would stop the exercise for the day.
I'm pretty sure this won't get to the grand jurors hearing the case, but I'll bet you a dollar Loehmann is also permitted to testify on his own behalf before the grand jury, just like the cops in the Mike Brown and Eric Garner cases did.
Maybe we should start changing things by requiring that police defendants may not be permitted to testify on their own behalf in grand jury proceedings. It's a start, at least.