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Police chief: 64 Cleveland officers broke rules in shooting

By Lateef Mungin, CNN
updated 7:57 AM EDT, Wed October 16, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The discipline does not involve possible criminal charges
  • The November 29 incident started when officers saw a car speeding
  • Two unarmed people were killed
  • "It was really a tragic pursuit," chief had said

(CNN) -- More than 60 officers will be disciplined over a police chase last year that left two people dead in a hail of 137 bullets, Cleveland police said Tuesday.

Cleveland Police Chief Michael McGrath said 64 officers were found guilty of "administrative charges ranging from excessive speed to insubordination," in connection with their role in the 2012 police chase.

The announcement after the discipline hearings doesn't involve a pending review of possible criminal charges in the deadly incident, CNN affiliate WOIO reported.

Two months ago, McGrath had said 74 of 277 officers on duty the night of the chase could face disciplinary action.

The incident began on November 29 when officers saw a car speeding and heard what they thought was a gunshot, according to the affiliate. Police pursued the vehicle, and the driver, Timothy Russell, refused to stop, authorities told the station.

Though officers reported seeing a gun in the car, no weapon was ever found, the affiliate reported.

The 23-minute chase took officers to East Cleveland, where 13 of them fired 137 shots, killing Russell, 43, and his passenger, Malissa Williams, 30, CNN affiliate WJW reported.

"It was really a tragic pursuit," McGrath said in August. "When those officers started their tour of duty that evening, they started it with good intentions."

CNN's Kevin Conlon contributed to this report.

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