Criminal Justice

Gavel courtroom sitting vacant

Illinois judge orders Rittenhouse extradition to Wisconsin

BY: - October 30, 2020

A Lake County, Illinois judge granted a request to extradite Kyle Rittenhouse to Wisconsin.  Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old Illinois native, faces two counts of first degree homicide along with other felony charges for shooting and killing two people and injuring a third in Kenosha on Aug. 26 during protests following the police shooting of Jacob Blake.  […]

Portland responded with force to racial justice protests, now Milwaukee may hire its deputy chief

BY: - October 30, 2020

Protesters in Portland and officers from the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) have violently clashed since protests against racial injustice sprung up across the country in late May. At the helm of the PPB’s day-to-day operations — as the city topped more than 100 straight days of protest — was Deputy Chief Chris Davis.  Now, Davis […]

Wisconsin State Capitol Police car in front of Wisconsin Capitol. (Photo: WI Department of Administration)

Wisconsin’s total law enforcement spending 15th in nation as communities enter budget season

BY: - October 28, 2020

Wisconsin’s local governments have entered budget season amid an economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and an upwelling in calls for the defunding of police departments by local activists.  But a new report from Money Geek shows Wisconsin ranks 15th nationally in the proportion of its state and local expenditures spent on policing and […]

Wauwatosa Police Department squad cars responding during a standoff with protesters on July 7, 2020. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

The 1960s Supreme Court case connecting the Joseph Mensah investigation to the Rodney King trial

BY: - October 26, 2020

Five Wauwatosa Police officers with important information about the scene of the 2016 police shooting of Jay Anderson were not interviewed as part of the independent investigation into the shooter, Officer Joseph Mensah.  Those five officers were not questioned because the city’s police and fire commission (PFC) did not “authorize” Steven Biskupic — the former […]

Protesters confront riot police blocking the Miller Parkway freeway entrance in Milwaukee, on the first day of protests. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Cell data recovery by police is new privacy frontier for courts

BY: - October 26, 2020

The District III Court of Appeals has certified a case to the  Wisconsin Supreme Court which explores the limits of law enforcement’s ability to download and access cell phone data. The case involves data which was downloaded from a man’s phone by the Green Bay Police Department and later viewed by Brown County Sheriff’s Office […]

People gather in Hart Park, Wauwatosa for the Justice Rally hosted by Roc Nation. (Isiah Holmes)

Following Justice Rally, activists wonder what Wauwatosa considers ‘peaceful protest’

BY: - October 18, 2020

Wauwatosa protesters and residents gathered in Hart Park on Thursday, Oct. 15 for a rally for justice for police shooting victim Alvin Cole, organized by Team Roc, the social justice arm of rapper Jay-Z’s Roc Nation. The rally took place just a few blocks from the Wauwatosa village, a local business hub. Hundreds gathered around […]

The Milwaukee Woman's Correctional Center (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Questions brewing over COVID outbreaks in smaller DOC facilities

BY: - October 15, 2020

“The people of Wisconsin are entitled to understand what additional burdens are being placed on our hospital systems,” said Chris Ott, Executive Director of the ACLU of Wisconsin, “as a result of the failure of Governor Evers and Secretary Carr to take serious actions to reduce the populations in Wisconsin prisons and to release the […]

A line of officers in riot and militarized gear block a street in Wauwatosa during the October curfew. Tear gas was still thick in the air. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Wauwatosa residents decry ‘militarized occupation’ of their community

BY: - October 13, 2020

A militarized police presence in Wauwatosa has transformed the once-quiet suburb, creating an occupation-like environment. Over the weekend, following the decision by District Attorney John Chisholm not to charge the Wauwatosa officer who shot 17-year-old Alvin Cole in February, protesters met a stiff brushback from local authorities.  Before the decision, Gov. Tony Evers activated the […]

UW campus police start Twitter fight with student

BY: - October 12, 2020

The UW-Madison Police Department is facing blowback from students after issuing a tweet Monday morning criticizing the personal beliefs of the chair of UW-Madison student government.  Late Sunday night, Matthew Mitnick, chair of Associated Students of Madison (ASM), tweeted the link to a letter to the editor published in the student newspaper, the Badger Herald. […]

‘De facto disenfranchisement’: outside groups work to make sure jailed voters can cast a ballot

BY: - October 12, 2020

There are about 12,500 people in Wisconsin’s county jails at any given time, according to the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. Most of those people are serving misdemeanor sentences or have been charged with a crime but not yet convicted and are in jail before trial because they can’t afford to post bail.  None of these […]

Noble Wray, courtesy of Fair and Impartial Policing

DOJ wraps up investigation into police shooting of Jacob Blake

BY: - October 9, 2020

The file from the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation into the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha was handed over to consultant Noble Wray, the former Madison Police Chief,  on Wednesday by its Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI). This begins the next phase of analysis before any decision on charges is made by […]

Protesters gather outside of the Milwaukee Safety Building waiting for the Cole family to come out with DA Chisholm's decision. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Protesters fill the streets in Wauwatosa and Milwaukee following Alvin Cole decision

BY: - October 9, 2020

Oct.7 proved to be a tense, anxiety-choked day in the City of Milwaukee and its suburban western neighbor Wauwatosa. A crowd of protesters, many local residents among them, gathered outside the Milwaukee City and County Safety Building, where District Attorney John Chisholm shared his decision not to pursue charges in the Alvin Cole shooting with […]