An arrest report obtained by WISN-TV reveals that Bucks guard Sterling Brown should have been charged with Resisting or Obstructing an Officer. Instead, the Milwaukee Police Department announced just four days after Brown was tased and arrested that it would not recommend any criminal charges against him.
However, excerpts from the arrest report obtained by WISN-TV indicate that Brown "became aggressive" with an officer who confronted him about his car, which was double parked across two handicapped spaces in the parking lot of the Walgreen's at S. 26th St. and W. National Ave. at about 2:00 am on January 26th.
That officer called for backup, and when another officer arrived on the scene and tried to interview Brown, he "physically resisted officers attempts to handcuff him and he was taken to the ground in a controlled manner." Brown's resistance was so intense that "a Taser had to be employed to get Brown in control with handcuffs."
Wisconsin Statute § 946.41(1) provides that "whoever knowingly resists or obstructs an officer while such officer is doing any act in an official capacity and with lawful authority is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor," which is punishable by a maximum sentence of nine months in jail and a $10,000 fine.
According to the arrest report, Brown very obviously knowingly resisted arrest, and thus should have been criminally charged. Based on the testimony of multiple police witnesses as well as body camera video (which has not yet been released), Brown very likely would have been convicted.
Yet in spite of this damning arrest report and the eyewitness accounts of multiple police officers on the scene, the Milwaukee Police Department declined to recommend any criminal charges against Brown and is instead investigating the arresting officers' use of a TASER.
There is no indication that the Milwaukee Police Department ever referred Brown's case to the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office, which appears to be a direct violation of the Police Department's own Standard Operating Procedures.
Several Milwaukee Police officers have told News/Talk 1130 WISN that they believe Brown received special treatment because he is a member of the Milwaukee Bucks, while Milwaukee Police Association President Mike Crivello and Alderman Bob Donovan both accused Mayor Tom Barrett of intervening on Brown's behalf.
Barrett himself said that he spoke with Bucks President Peter Feigin and Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn in the hours after Brown's arrest. Just a few hours after that, Bucks spokesman Brad Baum told News/Talk 1130 WISN that the team was confident that the Brown situation "would be resolved quickly."
That night, Brown played in the Bucks' win over the New York Knicks, indicating that the Bucks already knew that Brown would be cleared of any wrongdoing.
An official announcement clearing Brown did not come until three days later.
The arrest report now raises a number of pertinent questions: Why did the Milwaukee Police Department seem to ignore its officer's arrest report? Why didn't the Department ever refer Brown's case to the District Attorney's Office even with clear evidence that a crime had been committed? Why did Mayor Barrett talk with the President of the Bucks at all? And why is the Milwaukee Police Department investigating use of force that the arrest report seems to indicate was completely justified against a violent, resisting suspect?
Until the full arrest report and body camera footage are released, it would seem that those questions will remain unanswered.