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Rays reliever Colin Poche shares personal story in seeking Tamir Rice inquiry

Like Rice in 2014, Poche tells of how he was approached by a police officer when he was about 12 for using a similar toy gun. Outcome was different because of “the color of our skin."
The Rays' Colin Poche practices during spring training at Charlotte Sports Park on Feb. 13, 2019.
The Rays' Colin Poche practices during spring training at Charlotte Sports Park on Feb. 13, 2019. [ "TAILYR IRVINE | TIMES" ]
Published Jun. 6, 2020
Updated Jun. 7, 2020

Rays reliever Colin Poche shared a personal story Saturday in joining those asking for a new inquiry into the 2014 killing of 12-year-old Tamir Rice by a police officer in Cleveland.

Rice, who was black, was playing with an airsoft-style pellet gun when he was shot and killed by a white police officer outside a recreation center.

Poche, who is white, posted on Twitter about a similar encounter he said he had with police at his family’s Flower Mound, Texas, home when he was about the same age that turned out differently because of "the color of our skin.''

As a result, Poche said “it’s time to take another look” at Rice’s killing. No criminal charges were filed against the officer, though the city of Cleveland did pay Rice’s family a $6 million settlement of a lawsuit.

Poche, 26, also retweeted a link to a change.org petition started by Rice’s cousin seeking a new investigation that has been signed by more than 830,000.

Here is Poche’s story, as posted on Twitter this afternoon:

Poche made his big-league debut with the Rays last June and pitched in 51 games. The left-hander was acquired in a trade from Arizona in February 2018, having played college ball at Arkansas and Dallas Baptist.

He also retweeted the Rays’ recent statement about the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis while in police custody and the need to end systematic racism, and comments from Rays minor-leaguer Garrett Whitley.