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ACLU sues Milwaukee police after 2 arrested at memorial for Sylville Smith, fatally shot by officer

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Memorial for Sylville Smith near 44th and Auer

MILWAUKEE — The ACLU of Wisconsin is suing Milwaukee police for what attorneys said was the unlawful arrest of two spectators at a memorial site for Sylville Smith, fatally shot by police in 2016.

ACLU attorneys said in the lawsuit filed Wednesday, May 29 that Jarrett English and Benetria McGowan stopped at the memorial for Sylville Smith on Aug. 30, 2016 when police began arresting people after ordering them to disperse. Smith’s shooting on Aug. 13 had triggered two days of riots.

The lawsuit said McGowan was on her way to work when she came to the memorial to pray for peace and English showed up to watch the crowd. The lawsuit said McGowan and English weren’t part of the group police ordered to disperse.

Milwaukee police didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking a response.

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