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Serious crash comes hours before MKE Streets Safe initiative launched

Posted at 6:17 PM, Aug 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-19 19:17:58-04

MILWAUKEE — Two men were arrested following an armed robbery home invasion that led to a police chase, causing a serious crash at 35th and Burleigh on Monday morning.

A 23-year-old male and 19-year-old male are suspected of committing an armed robbery home invasion in the 2700 block of West State Street. Police spotted the stolen vehicle used in the getaway, attempted to pull it over and they led the police on a vehicle pursuit. Police called off the pursuit, when the two suspects continued to drive recklessly, causing a two-vehicle crash at 35th and Burleigh.

This, on the same day MPD held a news conference talking about the benefits of its MKE Streets Safe initiative which targets reckless drivers and fleeing suspects.

"The subjects in this morning's pursuit were being chased for two robberies," Chief Alfonso Morales said. "Again, they're the ten percent of the people causing a majority of the problems in the City of Milwaukee."

Milwaukee Police's pursuit policy has been under scrutiny over the last month due to collateral damage from the chases. On July 30, two children and an officer were hurt when a suspect crashed near 16th and Keefe after a pursuit. Then, two days later, 19-year-old Lequon McCoy was killed when a suspect ran into his car during a chase.

During this latest crash, a 46-year-old Milwaukee man was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries. A local business also dealt with damage from the crash.

"You heard the impact when it hit the building," Edward Staples, owner of Staples Hardware said. "The whole building shook and actually cracked the foundation of the building out front."

Staples business has been a literal staple in the community. For 50 years, it has been here at the corner of 35th and Burleigh. He's heard about the police chases over the last month resulting in injuries but never thought his business would be affected. He says he hears crashes all the time but hopes something can be done about the danger these chases present to the public. He doesn't know the answer, but he knows this isn't it.

"You can replace property but you can't replace a life," Staples said. "People complain about, well it might be a robbery or whatever, but is it worth a person's life?"

Chief Morales was steadfast about the pursuit policy. Suspects who run will be chased and held accountable.

"Oftentimes, it's why are the police doing it?" Morales said. "We don't want to chase but we have to [in order to] keep the city safe."

The two suspects were also transported to a local hospital and arrested following the crash.

This is an ongoing investigation with Milwaukee Police.