Sheriff a No-Show, Supervisors Adopt Investigation Policy for Milwaukee County Jail Deaths

Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. was a 'no-show' at a Milwaukee County Board meeting Thursday morning where supervisors voted on a policy related to the recent deaths at the Milwaukee County Jail.

This adopted resolution says the Milwaukee County will take the state policy as its own: outside investigators will review deaths that happen in the custody of law enforcement officers.

But some critics have point out that Sheriff Clarke cannot be forced to follow that policy.

"To the extent that he would ignore that county policy, he's an outlier there. Now, that may be his authority. I think it puts the owness on him to say that he's ignoring the county's policy, the county's expectation," Board Chairman Theodore Lipscomb said.

"At the end of the day though the county has the liability for what occurs there," Lipscomb said.

The final vote adopting the external investigation policy was 15 to 1. The one person voting against the resolution was Supervisor Deanna Alexander who said Sheriff Clarke is being unfairly judged.

"So people have said that it's a crime for somebody to die in the jail. That's not necessarily true. That assumes that anybody who dies in the jail has been murdered. Does that mean that everyone who dies in an ambulance is murdered by the people who are driving that ambulance and taking care of them there as well?" Supervisor Alexander said.

Supervisor Supreme Moore Omokunde - who is calling for Sheriff Clarke's resignation - said that line of argument misrepresents the issue.

"One of these deaths was rules a homicide. And so, how do we get to the point where we find our who's exactly responsible for what," Supervisor Moore Omokunde said.

Sheriff Clarke has not responded to CBS 58's specific calls for comment.

So far he's given no information to the public on the four recent deaths at the Milwaukee County Jail.

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