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Families, protesters want Wauwatosa Police officer held accountable for three fatal shootings

Posted at 10:13 PM, Jun 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-19 06:10:38-04

WAUWATOSA — Protesters marched through Wauwatosa on Thursday afternoon demanding a Wauwatosa Police officer be held accountable for his role in three fatal shootings.

The crowd made its way to Mayfair Mall, where 17-year-old Alvin Cole was shot and killed in February.

"I want you all to know who Alvin was, not just shout his name," said Taleavia Cole, Alvin's sister. "He was a kid. He was about to graduate."

The Wauwatosa Police officer is identified as Joseph Mensah. He shot and killed two other men while on the job before Cole. Jay Anderson, Jr., died in 2016 and Antonio Gonzales died in 2015.

Mensah did not face criminal charges for those two shootings. He is still under investigation for Cole's death.

"All I'm asking for is for you all to take a look at my pain and just imagine it could have been one of your kids," said Tracy Cole, Alvin's mother.

All three families joined together Thursday. They met Gonzales's mother, Sandra, for the first time.

"I'm not going to have closure yet until justice is done for him, and for the other two other gentlemen," Gonzales said. "They need justice here, they need to fire him."

Among several demands, the families and protesters want Mensah fired and charged. They also want Wauwatosa Police to wear body cameras.

They hope these changes could help prevent other families from knowing their pain.

"His dreams are shattered and everything because society did not help me and stuff," Gonzales said. "They just said, oh, we’re sorry."

Mensah is on administrative leave, which is protocol.

Wauwatosa Police released a statement on June 6 that reads in part, "The Wauwatosa Police Department values human life and safety above all else."

The statement goes on to say, "In each of the cases involving Officer Mensah, those Mensah encountered were armed with weapons. Each incident happened very quickly and verbal commands were given and not complied with. He defended himself with deadly force."

Milwaukee Police are still investigating Cole's death.

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