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DA: Officers involved in shooting of Alonzo Smith ‘justified in their actions’

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm has announced the Milwaukee police officers involved in the shooting of Alonzo Smith near 101st and Mill Rd. on Oct. 10, 2018 were justified in their actions under Wisconsin law.

READER WARNING: Some of the video and pictures in this post are graphic and not suitable for all 

Officers were dispatched to the neighborhood around 5:40 a.m. to investigate multiple 911 calls regarding shots fired outside of an apartment building. When officers arrived on the scene, a resident told them the suspected shooter was behind the building. The newly-released body camera video shows police officers approaching  Alonzo Smith in the parking lot of that building.

Body camera video officer-involved shooting near 101st and Mill Rd.

The body camera video shows officers approaching Smith while he was sitting inside a car -- the engine was running. The video shows officers repeatedly commanding Smith to show his hands; sometimes the officers used profane language in that process. But over and over again, the video shows Smith refused to comply with the officers' commands.

 

Body camera video officer-involved shooting near 101st and Mill Rd.

At one point, the body camera video shows Smith fired a shot at the officers from inside of the car. He then exited the vehicle and continued to fire at the two officers while the car was still running and in gear. Both officers returned gunfire, striking Smith multiple times. No officers were struck during this incident.

Body camera video officer-involved shooting near 101st and Mill Rd.

Smith's car, which had been in gear, crashed into the apartment building and started to catch fire. Nobody in the building was hurt.

Body camera video officer-involved shooting near 101st and Mill Rd.

Smith was treated at the scene and then transported to a hospital for treatment. He died several days later.

Investigators recovered from Smith a large hunting knife as well as two loaded handguns -- a 9 mm semi-automatic pistol and a .357 revolver. A search of Smith's apartment at the complex also turned up more ammunition.

Smith's mother was interviewed by police, and explained her son suffered from schizophrenia, telling them, "When he's having an episode, he gets upset and angry."

She revealed this wasn't his first time being shot by police. Back in 2014, Chicago officers fired upon Smith as he sat on his aunt's porch. In that case, there was a settlement.

The Wauwatosa Police Department was the lead investigative agency for this case.

Records are now posted for public view on the Milwaukee Area Investigative Team – Officer Involved Critical Incidents page of the City of Wauwatosa’s website at wauwatosa.net/mait.  The following records are available:

  • All investigative reports.
  • A synopsis of the MAIT investigation.
  • A cover letter describing and explaining redactions from the records.
  • A letter from the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office summarizing their conclusions of the investigation.

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