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Wanted: Police seek man after deadly sidewalk shootout caught on camera outside bar

Dennis Simmons

MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee police are seeking a suspect, 38, in connection with a sidewalk shootout, caught on camera in Milwaukee outside a bar near 23rd and State on Sept. 17, 2017.

According to police, Dennis Simmons has been charged with first degree recklessly endangering safety and felon in possession of a firearm in Milwaukee County.

He’s described as a black man, standing 6’2” tall, weighing 190 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.

Anyone with information is asked to call Milwaukee police at 414-935-7360.

Police said Simmons’ accomplice, Riccardo Hicks, 27,  was arrested for the same crime on Jan. 23.  He’s facing one count of first degree recklessly endangering safety, as party to a crime, use of a dangerous weapon, and one count of possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a felony.

Riccardo Hicks, Dennis Simmons

Those who were in the bar at the time said they heard dozens of shots fired. It caused many to hit the floor out of fear for their lives.

“The size of those guns…I see guns like that on TV. I don’t see guns like that,” Dyan Ward, owner of Talk of the Town bar said.

Shooting incident at 23rd and State, Milwaukee

Gunfire erupted on the sidewalk around 12:30 a.m. on Sept. 17.

“I just want us to put the guns down and I want everyone to be safe,” Ward said.

Ward said the man shot and killed outside the bar, Lanell Taylor, was a frequent customer.

“He was a nice guy. A nice family man. Quiet. Kept to himself,” Ward said.

Shooting incident at 23rd and State, Milwaukee

Police say the shooting stemmed from an argument that happened outside the bar. The video, showing multiple angles, shows bullets sparking off the sidewalk as a shooter sprays gunfire through the air. Witnesses said they heard dozens of rounds.

“I heard a couple of gunshots but I didn’t hear what the police said. I didn’t hear anything like that,” Ward said.

Inside the bar, patrons and workers hit the floor for cover.

“We can’t control what happens out here on the street. We have no control over that,” Eddie Murdock said.

Shooting incident at 23rd and State, Milwaukee

Murdock was tending bar just before the shots rang out. He left about a half-hour before the incident. He said the atmosphere inside the bar at the time was fun and friendly. He also said he remembers Taylor as a good customer.

“He had been coming in here for a while,” Murdock said.

Even hours after the suspect drove away, there was still fear on the block from what happened, and mourning for the life lost.

23rd and State

“He just got caught in the crossfire. I guess there was two parties shooting. He was just trying to get cover,” Ward said.

The bar closed for two nights after the shooting. The owner said that was done out of respect for Taylor.