MILWAUKEE -- Did he have a gun? Questions are still swirling after Milwaukee police opened fire on a suspect Thursday afternoon, August 31st. Family members of the victim are very vocal; they're thankful the shooting victim isn't dead. He was struck a couple of times but does not have life-threatening injuries.
"Is this justified again?" asks the victim's cousin.
The cousin of the 19-year-old victim questions if officers had a valid reason for pulling the trigger. Cellphone video taken from a building near 29th and Wisconsin, captured the shots fired. The suspect is seen collapsing on a rooftop.
"It's like when they saw him they fired twice," said the victim's cousin.
Family members say Jerry Smith Jr. was seriously injured. His cousin, who was soon headed to the hospital to visit him, says Smith shouldn't have been in this situation at all.
"He's not a dude that's out here bad on the street," said the victim's cousin. "He young, in school, a good kid. This is not no drug dealer, this is not no person that shoot people I'm like why are you shooting him?"
Police claim they chased the suspect onto a garage roof after getting a call about a subject with a gun.
"There's a lot of black males that fit the description," said the victim's cousin.
While police are not saying whether or not that man ended up having a gun, his cousin says the victim most likely fled because of the climate between some officers and many community members in the city.
"We are supposed to trust y'all but now you making us fear y'all," said the victim's cousin. "They probably came at him him too aggressive, then I's what did I do, now I'm running, no I'm trying to get away and get safety. I'll come back and turn myself into the police station, now you are too aggressive. I want justice whoever shot him. I want justice to be served."
Officers from District 3 were involved in the incident. One is a 33-year-old male with three-and-a-half years of experience. A second officer is a 28-year-old male with one-and-a-half years of experience. Both have been placed on administrative duty while the investigation takes place.