Derek Williams died in the back of a Milwaukee Police squad car. As he struggled to breathe, two officers spent time in the vehicle. They heard him say he couldn’t breathe and they ignored him. He lost consciousness and they didn’t call for medical assistance until four minutes later. His breathing difficulties are thought to have stemmed from one of the officers kneeling into his back as he lay prone on the pavement. But according to state and now federal officials, the officers did nothing wrong. [Read more…]Charged with a crime in Wisconsin? Please call (888) 828-6041.
Local outrage and national media attention may lead to positive changes within the ranks of the Milwaukee Police Department. According to the Journal Sentinel, the department announced changes to their existing search policy and an emphasis on existing standards that weren’t taken very seriously in years past. The changes will hopefully keep officers in check while potentially rebuilding some lost community trust. [Read more…]
Plea agreements are usually thought of as a compromise between the state (prosecutor) and the defendant (accused of a crime). They are a middle ground, where the defendant agrees to admit or partially admit to some or all of the charges against them in exchange for a lenient sentence or the dropping of some charges. Frequently, however, plea agreements undermine justice.
Many people, including a Milwaukee city alderman, are calling foul on a plea agreement made with still-current Milwaukee police officer Michael Vagnini. The issue of contention is that he was able to plead no contest to several different charges in exchange for avoiding convictions for sexual assault. [Read more…]
Criminal justice writer Radley Balko, formerly of Reason Magazine and now writing for the Huffington Post, has undertaken a big project—highlighting “botched” police raids every single day for the next several months. And one of his posts on the “Raid of the Day” happened to touch some lives in our state.
A camera caught former police officer Richard Schoen punching citizen Jeanine Tracy. It showed him punch her in the face, drag her from the squad car in which she was handcuffed, and knee her in the stomach. The footage was a piece of evidence in the Fire and Police Commission meeting that would ultimately give Schoen his walking papers, but only after a bit of an uproar. [Read more…]
A report into how Milwaukee police are using their automatic license plate scanning technology demonstrates exactly how much data police are collecting on every car on the road, the vast majority of whom are regular citizens not wanted for any reason, suspected of any criminal charge. [Read more…]
A twenty-two year old man died in the back of a Milwaukee police squad car last summer. His case has been at the front and center of many peoples’ minds, and is being thrust back into the spotlight this week after the medical examiner revisited its ruling on the cause of death—changing it from “natural” to “homicide.” [Read more…]
A complaint has been filed with the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office after a deputy got a little worked up about a protest last week. According to the Journal-Sentinel, the protest was part of an ongoing dispute between workers and owners of Palermo’s pizza. The workers have been striking over the last ten months, on weekends. [Read more…]
Seven police officers and a supervisor from District 5 have been placed on desk duty while they are the subject of a secret John Doe investigation, the likes of which are only used to keep the details from the public and press. The allegations aren’t completely clear, though it seems that the officers may be accused of improperly conducting strip and body cavity searches. [Read more…]
To tell a black person in Milwaukee that they are more likely to be stopped by police than a white, would come as no surprise to them. But now there are statistics to back it up. Not only are black drivers more likely to be stopped than their white counterparts, they are seven times more likely to be stopped, according to a study by the Journal Sentinel involving 46,000 traffic stops. [Read more…]