Legislature asks that Wisconsin impeach the prosecutor who investigated the shooting of a black man

On Thursday, Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled legislature is scheduled to take up a bill that would remove the district attorney from the county where a white police officer shot and killed a biracial man, sparking riots…

Legislature asks that Wisconsin impeach the prosecutor who investigated the shooting of a black man

On Thursday, Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled legislature is scheduled to take up a bill that would remove the district attorney from the county where a white police officer shot and killed a biracial man, sparking riots in 2015.

The Legislative Reference Bureau, which helped translate that bill, is recommending that Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, sign the bill into law. “That was an extraordinary rare circumstance — that the prosecutor chose not to seek justice,” the bureau stated in an executive summary of the bill. “The Public Integrity Review Board confirms that’s a very unusual situation.”

The director of the Legislative Reference Bureau, Mike Bretz, was also quoted as saying that if the bill is signed into law, the prosecutor of the Town of Franklin — where the fatal shooting took place — would face removal from office for only one year.

Eric Murphy, who is black, was shot by police officers in July 2015. Protesters took to the streets calling for the deputy district attorney of that department to be removed from office for mishandling the investigation, but that prosecutor never pressed charges.

Justice Department documents revealed in March also revealed the existence of a racist online journal kept by two of the officers, who used the pseudonym “Die_COWd.”

The map is part of a lengthy investigation into police shootings in Milwaukee, Wis., which began after the city was the site of unrest last summer after the fatal shooting of Sylville Smith, a black man, by a white police officer. That investigation also revealed a Ku Klux Klan chapter with links to the officer who shot Smith. The officer had previously been the subject of a civil lawsuit.

After the racial tensions in the city flared up, Gov. Walker and state Attorney General Brad Schimel instituted an independent review to evaluate officer-involved shootings. The inquiry, which has drawn criticism from some for its limited scope, has also drawn questions for failing to target the officer who shot Smith.

The Assembly last week passed a resolution condemning a new set of “stop-and-frisk” rules that allow police officers to take guns and other items away from people. They also supported the plan of a Milwaukee councilman to employ the same measures.

The state Senate passed the bill Thursday afternoon without a single Democratic senator having voted for it.

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