Kenosha Wisconsin Explodes in Aftermath of Police Shooting at Domestic Disturbance

6 mins read


AP featured image
Riot police try to avoid petrol bombs and flares thrown by protesters during clashes in Athens, on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016. Riots have broken out in central Athens, with dozens of youths throwing petrol bombs at police after a peaceful march to commemorate the police killing of a teenager eight years ago. (AP Photo/Yorgos Karahalis)

Earlier on Sunday I had a breaking story on a shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin, of an African-American man by one or more white police officers who responded to a report of a domestic disturbance.  Details on that call are still unresolved, but a resident of a house across the street from the incident captured the shooting in a video about 20 seconds in length.

Here is that video:

Kenosha is on the shore of Lake Michigan, just north of the border between Wisconsin and Illinois.  It is roughly halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee.  It has a population of approximately 100,000 residents, and a police force of only 185 officers.  That is to cover three shifts, so the number of officers available on any one shift is no more than about 90.

Community tension with the police over the shooting mounted very quickly as darkness fell.  Videos are now starting to hit twitter of protests that have been underway for hours, and the inability of the local police — Kenosha PD and Kenosha Sheriffs Deputies — to deal with the problem.

Kenosha is a city that is 83% white, and only 8% African-American.  The incident is going to spark serious racial animosity due to the very small percentage of the population that is African-Amercian, yet it is an African-American male who is on the receiving end of 8 shots.

What started as only demonstrations early in the evening progressed to vandalism, wide-spread property destruction, and looting.  The local police were simply too few in number to stop the violence without resorting to deadly force which they did not do.

 

It is uncertain whether the person in this video is a protester, or someone who is prepared to defend his home from protesters should they come his way.

According to Ian Miles Cheong, the rioters have left the area where the shooting took place, and are not doing property damage, including at the Kenosha County Courthouse.

Police presence has been sporadic — there is no real pattern as is the case in Portland.  Police in Kenosha have little warning about where violence is going to pop-up.

And finally the looting.

This is not a big city.  It will not take too much looting for a sizeable portion of the merchant class in Kenosha to close their doors for good.  Sunrise is likely to show some very troubling sights.

 





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