WEST ALLIS (WITI) — 43-year-old Kenneth Harris of Milwaukee has been charged with substantial battery for an incident in which he allegedly beat a West Allis woman on Tuesday, March 12th.
The criminal complaint in the case says Harris went over to the woman’s home, and the two left the home together — walking toward a bus stop.
The criminal complaint says Harris then struck the woman to her face with a closed fist, causing her to fall to the ground. Harris then began to repeatedly strike the woman, causing a fractured left orbital bone and numerous bruises — according to the complaint.
A Marine Corps veteran was able to stop Harris from nearly kicking the woman to death, and Wisconsin’s concealed carry law made his efforts possible.
Charlie Blackmore was driving home from work at 4:00 a.m. along Lincoln Avenue when he saw something on the sidewalk. Blackmore didn’t realize it was a woman on the ground being kicked in the head and stomach until he got closer.
That’s when he jumped out of his car and sprung into action.
“I said ‘stop’ and he starts coming towards me and that`s when I drew on him. He started getting closer and I said ‘get down on the ground,’” Blackmore said.
Blackmore held his gun on the suspect and called West Allis police. He says several times while waiting for police to arrive, the attacker moved toward him.
“I mean I’ve already made it up in mind that if he came at me I was going to have to take him down and I told him that. I warned him multiple times not to come towards me because he was a big guy and I wasn’t playing around and he didn’t seem like he was playing around,” Blackmore said.
Blackmore says police eventually showed up and had to force the suspect to the ground. They then asked to see Blackmore’s concealed carry permit.
“I put my hands up turned around and said ‘you can grab it out of my wallet.’ Checked my permit, gave me my wallet back, and then interviewed me for their paperwork. She had a really big laceration by her eye and it looked like her nose was broken,” Blackmore said.
Blackmore said the victim told him the man is an ex-boyfriend.
“She was not with him anymore and he had stalked her that day or something and he attacked her on her way to work,” Blackmore said.
Blackmore says situations like this are why he supports Wisconsin’s concealed carry law, and the rights of gun owners.
“We do good things. Not all of us are bad or crazy gun nuts. There are good people,” Blackmore said.
The West Allis police chief says these types of situations really are judgement calls for gun owners. While they don’t encourage this behavior, they appreciate citizens watching out for each other as long as they do it legally and are willing to accept the consequences.
If convicted in this case, Harris faces a maximum of three years and six months in prison and/or $10,000 in fines.