Wisconsin disciplinary hearing for Wauwatosa officer who killed 3 people in 5 years starts next month

Alvin Cole shooting led to Wauwatosa protests

Friday, November 13, 2020
Alvin Cole's mother, sister arrested during protest
Tracy Cole, the mother of a teenage boy killed by police, was arrested overnight during a protest.

WAUWATOSA, Wis. -- A suburban Milwaukee commission will begin deciding whether to discipline a police officer who has killed three people in five years.

Wauwatosa Officer Joseph Mensah has been cleared of criminal wrongdoing in all three cases but former federal prosecutor Steven Biskupic issued a report in October recommending the city's police commission fire him, saying the risk he could kill a fourth person is too great.

The commission's attorney, Chris Smith, on Wednesday set an evidentiary hearing for Dec. 16. He said the proceeding could last as long as several weeks.

Jay-Z showed his support of protesters last month by paying the fees for those arrested and fined in Wauwatosa where demonstrators called for justice in the death of Alvin Cole, who Mensah shot and killed earlier this year, a spokesperson for Team Roc told CNN.

The entrepreneur rapper and Team Roc -- the social justice arm of Roc Nation that Jay-Z founded -- offered their support after learning that no charges were brought against Mensah.

Cole was shot and killed outside a Wauwatosa mall when police responded to a disturbance call, police said. Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber told reporters at the time that Cole fired a gun before an officer returned fire.

Milwaukee County District Attorney John T. Chisholm said there was "sufficient evidence" showing that Mensah believed deadly force was necessary and "that belief was objectively reasonable."

Chisholm's decision to not charge Mensah has sparked protests in the city. They come in the wake of national demonstrations over law enforcement's treatment of Black Americans.

Wauwatosa, Wisconsin cleaning up after protests in the town just west of Milwaukee turned violent.

Jay-Z and Team Roc are also calling on Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the shooting.

In July, Jay-Z took out a full-page ad in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel calling for Mensah's prosecution.

This isn't the first time Jay-Z has been vocal on social justice issues. The billionaire took out full-page ads across the country in dedication to George Floyd in June and in 2015 posted bail for protesters marching against police brutality.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

The video in the player above is from an earlier report.