NewsLocal News


Investigator: Joseph Mensah should be fired after shootings

Posted at 10:28 AM, Oct 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-07 14:54:11-04

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — An independent investigator is recommending officials in a Milwaukee suburb fire a police officer who has shot and killed three people in the last five years.

Wauwatosa Police Officer Joseph Mensah shot and killed 17-year-old Alvin Cole in February. Cole was Black, as is Mensah.

Two earlier shootings involving Mensah were ruled justified. The report comes as the Milwaukee County prosecutor is expected to announce whether Mensah will be charged in Cole's death.
Former U.S. Attorney Steven Biskupic looked into the most recent shooting at the request of the Wauwatosa Police and Fire Commission.

According to Biskupic's report, Cole pulled a gun from his fanny pack while fleeing security and police outside Mayfair Mall. The gun fired, hitting Cole in the arm, and then he fell to the ground.

Cole was ordered to drop the gun and did not. According to the report, Mensah and other officers then approached Cole where Mensah claims that Cole pointed the gun at him.

Wauwatosa prepares for charging decision on suspended officer

Mensah then fired his gun five times at Cole.

Biskupic notes that Mensah was on the scene less than 30 seconds before encountering and shooting Cole.

On June 28, WISN radio interviewed Mensah. The show’s host said, “the suspect ran out of the mall and shot at you.”

The investigation found that statement to be incorrect.

The report notes, "Cole did not fire at Officer Mensah or any other officer. Cole shot himself in the arm while running away from the officers.”

Biskupic's report Wednesday concluded Mensah should be fired because the risk of a fourth shooting is too great.

You can read the full report below:

Report a typo or error // Submit a news tip