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‘Breaks my heart:’ Family of man arrested near 51st and Capitol unhappy with force used

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MILWAUKEE -- Family members of a man injured during his arrest near 51st and Capitol Wednesday evening, May 2, in an incident which also resulted in injuries to four Milwaukee police officers said Thursday they're strongly opposed to the force used during the man's arrest.

The family said Thursday they've seen many cellphone videos, showing the incident from different angles. They said they want to see body camera video showing how this unfolded. They said they don't feel officers did enough to de-escalate the situation, and instead, they believe the officers made things worse.

"He's very family-oriented. He's always jolly," said Shanikqua Stokes, cousin.

Frana Lowe, Shanikqua Stokes

Stokes identified the man seen in the videos being taken down and arrested near 51st and Capitol as her cousin, Demitrius Lowe, 25.

"To see that this happens to him just breaks my heart," said Stokes.

Demitrius Lowe

51st and Capitol

51st and Capitol

51st and Capitol

Stokes on Thursday spoke out on behalf of her family. She said no one has been allowed to see Lowe at the hospital. Police said during the arrest, he suffered injuries not believed to be life-threatening. Lowe's mother was told otherwise.

"They told her he was unrecognizable. The son that she knew would not be the same son," said Stokes.

Stokes said prior to his arrest, Lowe was drugged over the weekend, and went to the hospital for a toxicology test.

"He was having hallucinations and he couldn't sleep," said Stokes.

The unknown drug is affecting his kidneys and he's being treated for that along with multiple lacerations and injuries to his head and face.

"It was taken to an unhealthy place by the ones who should've had authority and control," said Frana Lowe, family member.

51st and Capitol

51st and Capitol

Milwaukee police said they responded to a domestic violence call, and they were told a man was suffering from an unusual mental health episode which caused him to become violent. Lowe threw multiple punches at officers. Four were hurt.

The cellphone videos show a Taser being used on Lowe, and that he was kicked and punched during his arrest. Lowe's family said they want to see the officers' body camera video.

"We are not justifying his behavior at all but we want them to be held accountable for theirs," said Frana Lowe.

Stokes said she and her family are strongly against the amount of force officers used.

"Maybe they need to refresh their training in communicating on how to talk a subject down from being aggressive instead of becoming aggressive with the subject. Two aggressive things is not going to de-escalate the situation," said Stokes.

The family says Lowe was already scheduled for a mental health evaluation prior to the incident Wednesday evening. The family said they're planning on taking legal action against the Milwaukee Police Department -- especially those officers seen kicking him while he was on the ground.

More viewer videos of the incident at 51st & Capitol

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