Confrontation arises between protesters, Wauwatosa police during march
WAUWATOSA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Protesters continued to march in Wauwatosa Friday night, Aug. 14, after a scuffle with police earlier in the evening.
Protesters and police were face-to-face when CBS 58 arrived on scene, but officers eventually moved back and protesters also continued on with their march.
One protester we spoke with said they'd been at the intersection of 70th and Aetna since daylight.
She said police came to the intersection while they were marching.
Protesters continue to march & drive through Tosa. They are now near 74th & State. There are a number of police agencies in the area pic.twitter.com/nrjVy2TkZy— Brittany Lewis (@brittlewisnews) August 15, 2020
We also spoke to Representative Jonathon Brostoff, who described what he says happened.
"The police pulled up, grabbed someone who was on his bicycle, threw him to the ground, three people jumped -- three of the police officers jumped on him, threw in their car and drove off, and then they've been blocking traffic ever since."
In a statement Friday night, the Wauwatosa Police Department said:
Tonight, there was protest in a residential neighborhood on the east side of the city. The City of Wauwatosa and the Police Department value the right to peacefully protest in public areas but picketing at a private residence or blocking streets is not permitted. While police were enacting an arrest, officers were confronted by protesters. The protestors attempted to prevent the arrest by physically engaging officers and blocking off routes, preventing squads from leaving. Neighboring law enforcement agencies responded to a mutual aid request. An arrest was made and the subject will be referred to the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office for charging with regard to his involvement in numerous incidents over the past few days. A second arrest was made for trespassing; the subject was cited and released.
Understanding that tensions are high, the department remains committed to serving the community. We will continue to evaluate incidents as they occur, prioritizing life and property.
This comes after a week of tension in Wauwatosa following an incident outside a home where suspended Officer Joseph Mensah was located.
Protesters and police have differing accounts of what happened there.
Mensah claims he was assaulted, while Rep. David Bowen, who has been with the protesters, said Mensah was the aggressor.
Mayor Dennis McBride said Thursday that officers would start enforcing ordinances already on the books.
He said many had been overlooked during three months of mostly peaceful protests there.
Now, he said arrests will be made and fines issued for things like blocking traffic, protesting on private property and picketing at private residences.