Friday, September 20, 2019

Sgt. Giese expected to return to full-duty, Mount Pleasant Chief Soens said

From The Journal

MOUNT PLEASANT — Following Racine County District Attorney Tricia Hanson’s decision that she will not seek charges against Mount Pleasant Police Sgt. Eric Giese for shooting and killing Ty’ Rese West, the sergeant is expected to return to active duty.
“With the district attorney’s decision now final, and our own internal investigation near completion, Sgt. Giese is expected to return to unrestricted full-duty status to resume his assigned responsibilities,” Mount Pleasant Police Chief Matt Soens said in a release Wednesday night, following the district attorney’s statement.
Soens went on to say, “Officer-involved shootings are extremely tragic, and the aftermath is difficult to navigate for the community and law enforcement alike. While the Racine County District Attorney’s decision brings some closure to this tragedy, we recognize that many people are grieving the loss of Ty’ Rese West. We offer our condolences to the West family and for all those who are mourning his loss.”
In addition, Soens said the Mount Pleasant Police Department will seek funding for the procurement of additional body-worn cameras through the 2020 budget process.
“The additional cameras would allow for all 56 sworn department members to have a camera issued and assigned to them, similar to other police equipment that is used on a daily basis. The department is also reviewing its body-worn camera policy to address any changes that might be needed,” Soens said.
According to Police Department policy, officers are “encouraged” to check out a body camera before their shift but are not required to do so. Also, officers have to manually turn the cameras on if it is practical and safe, but not all interactions with civilians are necessarily required to be recorded. The only times Mount Pleasant officers wearing body cameras are directly instructed to turn on their camera are during probation/parole searches and during the service of a search or arrest warrant.
In issuing her decision, Hanson said, “There is no question that a body camera recording would have been helpful to an analysis of this case and given a more definitive picture of the events on June 15, 2019, however the lack of body camera recording does not automatically indicate in inappropriate use of force.”

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