Lt. Tim McMillan, former police officer who went viral with post about terrified black teen, joins Claiborne Firm as investigator

SAVANNAH, Ga. (August 6th, 2018) —The Claiborne Firm, a leading civil rights law firm, announced today that Lt. Tim McMillan, a former police officer who went viral with a social media post about a terrified black teen, is joining the firm as investigator.

“I’m happy to have Lt. Tim McMillan join the team,” said William R. Claiborne, the firm’s managing attorney. “Tim brings 15 years of law enforcement experience to the job. He will advance our mission of representing officers and individuals who are seeking honest, ethical policing.”

Lt. McMillan is a retired police professional, writer, and public speaker. He gained national notoriety on October 1, 2016, when he wrote a heartfelt social media post about pulling over a terrified black teenager.

“I pulled a car over last night for texting and driving,” wrote Lt. McMillan on his Facebook page. “When I went to talk to the driver, I found a young black male, who was looking at me like he was absolutely terrified with his hands up. He said, “What do you want me to do officer?’ His voice was quivering. He was genuinely scared.

“I just looked at him for a moment, because what I was seeing made me sad. I said, ‘I just don’ want you to get hurt.’

“In which he replied, with his voice still shaking, ‘Do you want me to get out of the car?’

“I said, ‘No, I don’t want you to text and drive. I don’t want you to get in a wreck. I want your mom to always have her baby boy. I want you to grow up and be somebody. I don’t even want to write you a ticket. Just please pay attention and put the phone down. I just don’t want you to get hurt…”

The post went viral. It was covered by 171 different media organizations in 16 different countries. Lt. McMillan was featured in the 2017 documentary ‘Walking While Black: L.O.V.E. Is the Answer.”

Before joining the Claiborne Firm, Lt. McMillan served with the Garden City Police Department in Chatham County, Georgia, for 15 years. Lt. McMillan was named the “Police Officer of the Year” in 2006-2007.

Lt. McMillan held a variety of roles for the Garden City Police Department including Investigator, Crime Scene Technician, K9-handler, Sergeant, and Lieutenant.

Ever since his life changing encounter with that young black teen, Lt. McMillan has made a concerted effort to advocate for police reform. Lt. McMillan founded the Four Trees Project, Inc., a nonprofit that aims to research, develop and enforce the highest possible standards for modern policing.

“It’s an honor to be joining the Claiborne Firm,” said Lt. Tim McMillan. “Over the past two years, through the countless people I’ve met and the stories they’ve shared, I have realized there are a number of people who feel voiceless about the suffering they have endured. The most exciting aspect of this new venture is the opportunity to help those who have endured hardship and to work with a team that is dedicated to helping people.”

The Claiborne Firm specializes in civil rights, criminal defense, catastrophic personal injury, and high-stakes domestic disputes. The firm’s work has been featured in The New York Times, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and PBS NewsHour.


CNN: White officer’s heartfelt post on pulling over a black teen resonates widely

USA Today: Post by cop who pulled over ‘terrified’ black youth goes viral


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