WEST ALLIS -- A body camera captured a struggle and arrest from July that left a West Allis police officer so badly hurt that he still wasn't back on active duty Thursday, Oct. 17, when the suspect in the case made his initial appearance in court.
The following charges were filed Sept. 17 against Elvis Garcia, 36, of Milwaukee,
- Resisting an officer -- causing great bodily harm
- Battery or threat to a judge, prosecutor, or law enforcement officer
- OWI, fourth offense, with passenger under 16
- Operating with a prohibited alcohol concentration with a passenger under 16, fourth offense
- Operating while revoked
The body camera video revealed how the arrest unfolded. It wasn't only a struggle to get Garcia into a squad car, it was also painful.
According to a criminal complaint, police responded to the area near 92nd Street and Manitoba Street in West Allis on July 19 for a report of a fight involving a man and woman. Officers spotted a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed, southbound on 92nd Street, and a traffic stop was conducted near 92nd Street and Cleveland Avenue.
The driver, later identified as Garcia, exited the vehicle and laid on the pavement -- screaming that officers "should just arrest him." Officers tried talking to him, but he continued yelling, the complaint said. He was handcuffed and officers tried placing him in a squad. But the complaint said he refused to sit in the squad and demanded that officers get his son out of the vehicle, indicating he would "fight officers until his son was dealt with," telling officers he would "fight (them) until the death." The complaint said he called officers vulgar, derogatory names.
The complaint said as Officer Ryan Kendall tried to control Garcia's legs, Garcia kicked the officer in the groin and said, "I swear to God, I will beat the life out of both of you." Kendall fell to the ground, and the complaint said he felt a "pop" in his back, and the lower left side of his back and the entire left leg/foot went numb. Kendall had to be taken to the hospital, where he required surgery.
He was in court Thursday, surrounded by colleagues, as prosecutors asked that Garcia's bond be increased to $5,000. The defense argued Garcia made every court appearance since his arrest, and an increase in bond wasn't needed. The court commissioner sided with prosecutors, arguing Garcia's decision-making could not be trusted.
While Officer Kendall did not wish to comment on the case Thursday, he remained on medical leave as a result of Garcia's alleged actions.
According to prosecutors, Garcia's passenger said they had been drinking before Garcia's arrest, and Garcia wanted to pick up his child, so Garcia drove to get him. At the hospital, prosecutors said a blood draw revealed a result of .189. The complaint said Garcia was convicted of OWI in 2005, 2006, and 2014 in Milwaukee and Monroe counties. Additionally, his driver's license was revoked at the time of this alleged incident due to OWI.