Elliot Hughes, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
A series of public bids issued by the City of Milwaukee to purchase tools to deploy chemical irritants to control crowds have been canceled after several Common Council members raised objections Wednesday, citing the Milwaukee Police Department’s controversial use of tear gas and rubber bullets during protests of police brutality recently.
But MPD is now asking City Hall to reconsider and go forward with the process of purchasing the gas mask equipment, tactical gas delivery systems and aerosol projectors for irritants, saying the equipment is needed for the 2020 Democratic National Convention.
The supplies would be used to protect the public from armed suspects, hostage situations and active shooters, MPD said in a statement. The equipment was requested by MPD in February and March, long before protests erupted in Milwaukee.
Several public officials, including Mayor Tom Barrett, have publicly opposed MPD's recent use of tear gas and rubber bullets during protests.