Reporting Mike Schuh
BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Honors for a fallen officer. The city police department is bringing some level of peace to the family of a plainclothes policeman accidentally killed by his colleagues outside a nightclub.
Mike Schuh was there for Friday’s emotional ceremony.
William Torbit died outside a nightclub. Fellow police officers fired more than two dozen shots, his family angered that no one faced criminal charges.
Just off busy Edmonson Avenue, police brass lined up on the sidewalk on Wildwood Parkway. Torbit grew up on the same street.
“He was the role model everyone strives to be,” said one attendee.
On what would have been his 35th birthday, commanders, the mayor, more than 100 family and friends and even recruits gathered as Wildwood Parkway got a new name.
That moment was fitting in a town where it seems little goes smoothly.
A childhood friend lifted up Torbit’s 3-year-old niece.
Welcome to Officer William Torbit Way.
Torbit’s family, at times at odds with the city, is thankful but paid particular attention when the mayor spoke about the death investigation.
“The panel’s recommendations are guiding us to improve training for our officers,” Baltimore’s Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said.
Just last week, new training and internal affairs directors were announced, brought to Baltimore from the outside to make sure another officer doesn’t die like Torbit did.
“We are grateful that the changes are going to affect Baltimore in his honor, and that’s great, but we do want someone to come to us and really tell us why they felt it was necessary to put over 22 bullets in one human being,” Tiffany Clark, Officer Torbit’s sister, said.
Until that happens, a grateful city pays tribute to a man who gave his life while on duty serving his city.
The commissioner was unable to attend Friday’s dedication as he was at a chiefs of police convention in Las Vegas.