CRIME

Cleveland police hand off investigation into officer's fatal shooting of 12-year-old boy

FILE- In this Nov. 26, 2014, file photo, Cleveland Police Deputy Chief Ed Tomba, right, shows surveillance video of the weekend police shooting of Tamir Rice during a news conference in Cleveland. The investigation into Rice's death is being handed over to a county sheriff’s office in an attempt to make sure the probe is evenhanded, the city’s mayor said Friday, Jan. 2, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan, File)

FILE- In this Nov. 26, 2014, file photo, Cleveland Police Deputy Chief Ed Tomba, right, shows surveillance video of the weekend police shooting of Tamir Rice during a news conference in Cleveland. The investigation into Rice's death is being handed over to a county sheriff’s office in an attempt to make sure the probe is evenhanded, the city’s mayor said Friday, Jan. 2, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan, File)  (The Associated Press)

The investigation of a Cleveland police officer's deadly shooting of a 12-year-old boy carrying a pellet gun will be overseen by a county sheriff's office.

Cleveland's mayor said Friday the city is handing off the probe to the Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH'-guh) County sheriff to make sure the investigation is transparent.

Tamir Rice had an airsoft gun that shoots nonlethal plastic pellets when a rookie officer shot him Nov. 22 at a Cleveland playground. The black youth's death raised questions about how police treat blacks.

A police union official says the white officer had no way of knowing Tamir wasn't carrying a real firearm.

A police deadly force investigation team has been collecting evidence and conducting interviews since the shooting.

Cleveland police have been under federal scrutiny on how they've handled other use-of-force cases.