Milwaukee Erupts Over Police Shooting

Officials plead for calm amid protests after 23-year-old killed by cops
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 14, 2016 6:00 AM CDT
Milwaukee Erupts Over Police Shooting
Authorities respond near a burning gas station as dozens of people protest following the fatal shooting of a man in Milwaukee, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. A crowd of protesters skirmished with police Saturday night in the Milwaukee neighborhood where an officer shot and killed a man after a traffic stop...   (Gretchen Ehlke)

Simmering anger over the fatal shooting of a man by police erupted in violence on Milwaukee, reports the AP, with protesters skirmishing with officers over several hours and setting fire to at least four businesses. The uprising that broke out Saturday didn't subside until after midnight, after Mayor Tom Barrett and other city leaders appeared at a news conference to plead for calm. Police said three people were arrested, and one officer was hurt by a brick thrown into a squad car. The triggering event came Saturday afternoon, when a man fleeing police after a traffic stop was shot and killed. Police said the man was armed, but it wasn't clear whether he was pointing the gun or aiming it at officers. Neither his race nor the officer's was immediately released, nor were they identified. The officer was wearing a body camera, Barrett said. "We have to have calm," Barrett said. "There are a lot of really good people who live in this neighborhood."

Alderman Khalif Rainey, who represents the district where the violence occurred, said the city's black residents are "tired of living under this oppression." He said he didn't justify the violence "but nobody can deny that there are racial problems here in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, that have to be rectified." Barrett said the 23-year-old man who died was stopped by police for "suspicious activity." As many as 100 protesters massed at 44th Street and Auer Avenue between 8 and 9pm, surging against a line of 20 to 30 officers. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that officers got in their cars to leave at one point and some in the crowd started smashing a squad car's windows. Another police car was set on fire. Around 11pm, police with shields and helmets moved into the intersection, telling a crowd of about 50 to disperse. Some threw rocks and debris at police, who held up their shields. (More police shooting stories.)

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