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Demonstrators disperse after fifth night of protests in Wauwatosa

Posted at 5:31 AM, Oct 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-12 06:31:03-04

WAUWATOSA — Most demonstrators dispersed and a few were arrested in Wauwatosa on Sunday night following warnings from police that they were violating curfew.

Around 7:40 p.m. a group of about two dozen demonstrators remained on the corner of 69th and North Avenue when Wauwatosa Police declared it an unlawful assembly.

Police warned the group several times, and the group ran away when police began walking towards them.

Police could be seen telling one person to stop running, and they took him into custody. At least one other person could be seen being taken into custody by police.

Wauwatosa Police tweeted, "Most of the group dispersed, but some individuals have not left. Those who are refusing to leave are being arrested."

Earlier in the night, dozens gathered at the corner of 69th and North Avenue to protest the curfew and police presence. Many kids and families held up signs, and most went home at curfew time.

"I've been at the protests the last couple nights and seeing the military force that's come at them, it could be peaceful but police are forcing a standoff," said Sarah Hunt-Frank.

"I been here for like 20 years and this is the first time I have ever seen the militarization of police against its own citizens," said Craig Brittingham. "It's ridiculous."

Going forward, Brittingham and others said they believe there is a lot of work to do in Wauwatosa. Many they said they want to make it more welcoming for people of color, and they want their leaders to hear their demands for change.

"We need to change the laws that allow police to kill black and brown people that’s what needs to be changed," Brittingham said.

Sunday marked five nights of demonstrations in Wauwatosa following the district attorney's decision not to charge Wauwatosa Police Officer Joseph Mensah in the shooting death of 17-year-old Alvin Cole.

"The easy answer is to fire Mensah," Brittingham said. "It's not hard, they are making it hard."

TMJ4 has reached out to Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber for an interview, and a spokesperson said the department would reach out later.

The curfew is set to end at 6 a.m. Monday.

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