A former police officer who shot and killed 3 folks all the way through his five-year tenure with a division in Wisconsin may not be charged in reference to probably the most deadly shootings, particular prosecutors who reviewed the case mentioned on Wednesday.
One of the vital court-appointed prosecutors mentioned they might have bother convincing a jury that Joseph Mensah had no longer acted in self-defense when he shot and killed Jay Anderson Jr., 25, in his automobile in a park in Wauwatosa, Wis., on June 23, 2016. Mr. Mensah instructed investigators that Mr. Anderson was once achieving for a gun.
“Something that we will turn out past an inexpensive doubt is that Officer Mensah deliberately shot and led to Jay Anderson’s loss of life,” Scott Hansen, a Milwaukee attorney and probably the most two particular prosecutors assigned to the case, mentioned at a listening to on Wednesday.
Mr. Hansen mentioned they might no longer turn out past an inexpensive doubt that Mr. Mensah acted unlawfully when he fatally shot Mr. Anderson.
“The decisive query that we in the long run desirous about was once self-defense,” he mentioned. He famous that he and Tim Gruenke, the L. a. Crosse County district lawyer and the opposite particular prosecutor who reviewed the case, checked out pictures and nonetheless photographs from the officer’s sprint digicam and used a ridicule jury to resolve that there was once no longer sufficient proof to turn out Mr. Mensah had no longer acted in self-defense.
“He feared that if he didn’t shoot first, he was once going to be shot himself,” Mr. Hansen mentioned.
The Milwaukee County District Lawyer’s Place of business declined to rate Mr. Mensah in a while after Mr. Anderson’s loss of life.
A attorney for Mr. Anderson’s circle of relatives, Kimberley Motley, later used an difficult to understand provision in Wisconsin state regulation to get a Milwaukee County Circuit Court docket pass judgement on to listen to proof and make a decision whether or not there was once possible motive to consider Mr. Mensah dedicated a criminal when he shot Mr. Anderson. The courtroom appointed Mr. Hansen and Mr. Gruenke as particular prosecutors to check the case.
“We disagree with what came about in courtroom nowadays, however as a result of we disagree doesn’t imply we’re finished preventing,” Ms. Motley mentioned at a information convention after the particular prosecutors introduced their determination on Wednesday.
“It’s ridiculous and peculiar that an officer kills 3 folks inside of a five-year period of time,” she added.
A attorney for Mr. Mensah was once no longer in an instant to be had for remark.
Mr. Mensah joined the Wauwatosa division in 2015. Throughout his tenure there, Mr. Mensah fatally shot two folks along with Mr. Anderson.
He shot and killed Alvin Cole, 17, in February 2020 after Mr. Cole refused to position down a firearm and ran from the police following a war of words at a shopping center.
In October 2020, John Chisholm, the Milwaukee district lawyer, mentioned he would no longer prosecute Mr. Mensah in reference to Mr. Cole’s taking pictures. Mr. Chisholm mentioned that officials had reported that Mr. Cole pointed a gun at them at one level and that he then fired the gun whilst operating away.
The verdict prompt protests and taken renewed consideration to Mr. Mensah’s involvement within the two earlier deadly shootings, together with that of Mr. Anderson. In 2015, Mr. Mensah and any other officer fatally shot Antonio Gonzalez, who was once wielding a sword when police faced him. Prosecutors declined to record fees towards Mr. Mensah in every of the ones instances.
Mr. Mensah agreed to renounce from the Wauwatosa division in November 2020 as a part of a “separation settlement” with the native police union and the Commonplace Council, the governing frame of Wauwatosa, a town about 5 miles west of Milwaukee.
In January 2021, he joined the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Division, simply around the county line, as a deputy. The dep., which introduced his hiring in a commentary, mentioned on the time that Mr. Mensah’s use of power was once in keeping with the regulation, as a handful of inside and unbiased investigations concluded.
The Sheriff’s Division didn’t reply to a request for remark. The Milwaukee Magazine Sentinel reported that Mr. Mensah is these days hired as a detective with the dept.