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Ald. Cavalier Johnson meets citizens concerned about reckless driving

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Posted at 7:01 PM, Sep 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-20 20:01:19-04

MILWAUKEE — Residents in northwest Milwaukee joined District 2 Alderman and Common Council President Cavalier Johnson for a tour of their neighborhood on Monday amid growing concerns of reckless driving in the city.

"I used to play in the street, I played kickball. You can't do that anymore," said Mariah Johnson (not related to the Alderman), remembering safer streets when she was kid in the 1990s.

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The residents, who live near 60th and Hampton -- an area notorious for speeding and vehicle accidents -- stood on a street corner with Johnson, who is running for mayor, for over an hour.

Many made requests for speed bumps to be installed on their streets. Others called for greater traffic enforcement in that part of the city.

According to Milwaukee Police, speeding citations have risen dramatically over the past two years.

Citations totaled 6,711 from January through September in 2020. This year, they've nearly tripled in the same period to 19,806.

Johnson said he believes the city is still recovering from a lax police pursuit policy years ago.

"We're trying to put the genie back in the bottle. Because for nearly a decade folks were able to drive with impunity, without much fear that they would be pursued by police," he said.

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He also believes that by reducing many of the city's wide avenues, it would limit options for speeders to zip around the city.

Mariah Johnson lost her brother, Jerrold Wellinger, last month when a car in an illegal street race hit and killed him.

She said she's afraid today to let her kids play outside because of the dangerous driving.

"It's time to change. I'm not moving out to the boonies. So it's time to change this area," said Johnson.

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