Police Chief Ed Flynn Discusses Stolen Cars Issue in Milwaukee
CBS 58â€” Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn spoke candidly Tuesday night about the issue of stolen cars in the city.
Three teens died in stolen car crashes last week. One crash happened in Brown Deer, the other in Milwaukee. All three killed were from Milwaukee.
Tuesday night Chief Flynn spoke at Bay View High School. It was a public safety meeting for the Bay View Neighborhood, but the Chief spoke candidly about crime across Milwaukee and the challenges of bringing down the number of car thefts.
â€œWeâ€™ve got the body count to prove that these unguided missiles are a menace to the community,â€ Chief Flynn said.
Chief Ed Flynn says in 2015 more people were killed by stolen cars than armed robbers. So far in 2017 no bystander deaths have been reported but two teenagers in a stolen car were killed Friday in Milwaukee.
â€œThe youths killed in the police pursuit had committed an armed robbery,â€ Chief Flynn said. â€œThey had a stolen gun. We had to catch them. Itâ€™s just tragic this had to end the way it did.â€
Chief Flynn explained the departmentâ€™s pursuit policy, saying officers do not chase cars just because they are stolen. However officers will pursue stolen vehicles if the occupants are suspected in a more serious crime, like armed robber.
â€œItâ€™s very concerning to me,â€ said Kyle Kummers, a Bay View resident concerned about car thefts.
Kummers listened as Chief Flynn spoke about the need for tougher consequences for car thieves.
â€œItâ€™s a serious crime,â€ Chief Flynn said. â€œThatâ€™s why Iâ€™ve been advocating that the rest of this system not just look at it as just a quote property crime. Itâ€™s a gateway crime for more serious crime. Weâ€™ve got the data to prove it.â€
So far Chief Flynn says his efforts havenâ€™t been very successful.
â€œOnce we make the arrest the system reacts to the case, not the community impact,â€ Chief Flynn said.
Kummers says he too wants tougher penalties for car theft and says Chief Flynnâ€™s comments give him hope the system will move in the right direction.
â€œThat puts everybody in danger,â€ Kummers said. â€œIt puts peopleâ€™s lives that are on the road in danger. It puts their own lives in danger.â€