Milwaukee, Wisconsin (TFC)— With so little transparency inherent in police surveillance programs, some were excited to hear of Seaglass. The new technology–developed by University of Washington researchers–aimed to empower citizens to detect cell tower simulators. These shadowy devices, sometimes called…
Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (TFC)— Transparent policing means numerous things, all revolving around informing the public. Citizens are concerned what crimes may be occurring around them.Theoretically, police departments remedy this by producing public reports detailing their actions. Wauwatosa PD, however, may not…
Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (CopBlock)— After over 60 days, the Wauwatosa (Tosa) Police Department finally released an ex-detective’s 2013 resignation letter. However, WPD redacted large swaths in an admitted effort to protect their officers’ reputations. Its unaltered portions included accusations of systematically…
The drug war’s casualties reach far beyond bloated penitentiary yards, fractured rehab facilities, and its own endless perpetuation. America’s opioid crisis, and its scale, is straining police, the policed, and the decades old rhetoric between them.
Heroin use and overdose in particular is climbing, indiscriminately rocking towns with barbaric fervor. Milwaukee Wisconsin is no stranger, nor its numerous nearby suburbs–like Wauwatosa. Perhaps now is the time for law enforcement to consider drug enforcement nuances cropping up elsewhere in the country.
“888 bodies and counting”, a morbid but fitting title to a recent report by Milwaukee’s alderman’s office. In 14 pages, the document presents detailed analysis of a overdose plague striking the city. “Milwaukee county alone has seen a 495% increase in heroin related deaths between 2005-2015”, it reads. As a point of perspective, Milwaukee’s opioid deaths, heroin and others, exceed deaths by car accidents and homicide.
Calm seems to follow each day break here in Milwaukee, the night’s chaos passing with it. That calm is deceptive, insidiously distracting from the night’s atmosphere. A mass catharsis grips the Northside nightly, and has wrought an ominous government presence. It is that presence which is perhaps most unnerving.
Funny how it sometimes takes military units being deployed for people to pay attention to a certain place. As a lifelong Milwaukee resident, I must confess a kind of angst having the entire world’s attention on us. Milwaukee has been rated one of the most segregated American cities, the fourth poorest and yet, only now the world is watching. As if the blaze’s violent brilliance were a beacon, drawing in all manner of onlookers.
Most are aware of the catalyst– that being yet another police shooting. That phrase is beginning to carry it’s own kind of morbid weight it seems,”yet another”. After Milwaukee officers pulled over a car, the occupants ran and police pursued. The runner, 23 year old Sylville K. Smith, allegedly carried a gun as he ran from officers who eventually fired. Police released few initial details, but did offer information on the shooting officer.
An allegedly armed suspect was shot and killed after reportedly fleeing from officers. Riots break out. For those who have been following this series of articles, this should come as no surprise. It appears as though the response from citizens has died out, but the importance of this event cannot be understated. Had other cities joined in the rioting, this could have been the incident that sent the US into the final stage of the cycle of insurgency, which is widespread and open insurrection.
For those just joining this series of articles, a brief recap is in order. The series began in the immediate aftermath of the Ferguson riots. It outlined cycle of insurgency and explained how insurgencies form, mature, and erupt. The series provided milestone events, which would need to occur prior to open rebellion taking hold. They have all occurred. The cycle of insurgency is a historic pattern that has repeated itself throughout history and will continue to do so. The stages are:
Five months ago, 21 year old Christopher Davis was shot dead by police in Muskego, Wisconsin. Today, his family wrestles with the frustrating reality that Chris’s killer won’t be charged with a crime. Key details gleaned during federal investigations, however, bring that decision into sharp questioning.
During February of 2016, Christopher Davis accompanied friends driving from Milwaukee Wisconsin to Muskego. Driver Jose Lara told investigators they’d gone to inspect a car for purchase. At the time of the shooting Davis’ cousin, a US Army private, stated this as well. Being uncomfortable with freeway driving, Davis allowed Lara to drive his car. Davis and Lara were accompanied by a third individual, Roberto Juarez Nieves, MJS reports. Nieves’ name, however, was redacted in the investigative report.