Cop Caught on Camera Withdrawing Money Using Drunk Man’s ATM Card and Walking Away Had a Good Reason But Who Trusts the Police?

helping outTMJ4A security guard who saw a Milwaukee cop escort a drunk man to an ATM, withdraw $300 and walk away sent a copy of the tape to the FBI and a local television station, but not the police chief. Local NBC affiliate TMJ4 reports:

The security guard wanted this investigated but told MPD’s Internal Affairs, “He did not trust the Milwaukee Police Department to investigate the matter properly.”
That security [guard] asked the I-Team to hold police accountable. MPD’s Internal Affairs talked to all involved. The department’s report found, “the investigation revealed no evidence of criminal misconduct.”

It turns out the man was a Marine. The cop helped him out when the Marine broke a taxi window.

The report showed the cab driver did not want to press charges and only wanted the Marine to pay him back for the damages. The report said the “officer indicated he did not keep any of the money.”

A pattern of police abuse and excess has led to a significant trust deficit for police. From TMJ4:

MPD’s reputation makes investigating itself harder… [the security guard] said he doubted MPD because how long it took the agency to release the Derek Williams’ dash cam video.

Williams died while begging for help in police custody in 2011. Also, in April Officer Michael Vagnini entered a plea in his role in the illegal strip search scandal within the agency. Three other cops are still awaiting trial. Also, the FBI is still looking into practices within the department...

Even Chief Edward Flynn admits trust is a key element.

“A community's trust in the police department is a crucial component,” explained Flynn.

But when so many fail to trust his department, how can it change the negative perception? Flynn blamed us.

"I'll tell you how we change the perception. I'm old enough to remember when being transparent was a bad thing. Now we recognize it's a good thing,” said Flynn.

The police chief has previously called the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel’s extensive reporting on his police department  a “witch hunt.” Speaking of witch hunts, Flynn promised his own against legal gun owners in Milwaukee.

You can see the video via TMJ4 here.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    But when so many fail to trust his department, how can it change the negative perception? Flynn blamed us.

    "I'll tell you how we change the perception. I'm old enough to remember when being transparent was a bad thing. Now we recognize it's a good thing,” said Flynn.

    Seriously, Flynn is not averse to being up front about his department's misdeeds, but is it really necessary for news media to report it? It would be better for the community if they didn't know that the bad cops exist or which ones they are. To earn their trust.

  • ||

    Everyone was right in this case. Except the jarhead what broke the window.

  • AlmightyJB||

    That window was mocking him with his own reflection.

  • derpules||

    But without that Marine what would all the window glazier's do? He's stimulating the local economy or something.

  • ||

    And then that window glazier spends that money on a nice dinner, and a new pair of shoes. If the window glazier doesn't have windows to repair than there wont be any cobblers or cooks.

  • UnCivilServant||

    But if the marine didn't spend that money on more booze, the barman might go out of business.

    And there are already too few cobblers. Most shoes I see are mass produced junk.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    The department’s report found, “the investigation revealed no evidence of criminal misconduct.”

    Is it bad that my balls instictively braced for the nutpunch after this sentence?

  • derpules||

    If by "braced" you mean "retreated into your rectum" then yes.

  • John||

    Looks like Mark Stanford is going to win the open house seat in South Carolina. So much for Dem momentum in the house.

  • Bam!||

    I have no opinion on Stanford, but seeing Colbert go down leads me to experience schadenfreude.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    This is probably the best thing that could happen to Colbert. Now he gets to spend the next two years making jokes about the "family nemesis".

  • John||

    She didn't seem to have any qualifications or reasons for running beyond "I am some famous guy's sister".

  • Stormy Dragon||

    In what way was she less qualified than Mark Sanford? She's got years of experience in senior executive experience both in the corporate an university worlds.

    Sanford's never had a real job.

  • John||

    That would all be great, if she were running for governor rather than the House. Being a chief executive doesn't qualify you to be in the House anymore than any other job.

  • ||

    I would say the only thing that can prepare you for being in the House is being a very small cog in a gigantic doomsday machine.

  • Harvard||

    [She's got years of experience in senior executive experience both in the corporate an university worlds.]

    Enough alone to disqualify her.

  • some guy||

    It was a special election in a historically red district, right? That should be an easy one for the GOP.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    How I avoided an assault charge by crossing the street:

    This evening, while about on my regular constitutional, I witnessed a hipster pushing his child (I can only assume it was a baby, maybe it was a kitty?) in an old-fashioned baby carriage.

    I am not sure what supernatural force prevented me from assaulting him.

  • Ted S.||

    On my constitutional this evening, I came across a guy on his riding lawn mower, with his woman walking alongside. I heard him say something to the effect that he had to make certain to stay on the lawn lest he get stopped for DWI. :-) (This is a pretty rural area; there wouldn't have been any cops around.)

    The woman, who looked like she's been through 20 years of heavy drinking and smoking, seemed a bit toasted herself as she asked me where I was coming from on my walk (I live next to 1000 acres of state forest and normally walk on the trails in it, but decided to go all the way through to the other side this time), and then started asking me where I had parked my car.

    Harmless, but mildly creepy. Yesterday when I saw a porcupine shimmying down a tree trunk was more interesting.

  • Warrren||

    The knowledge that deep down that you too, are a hipster.

  • Warrren||

    Boring story.

    You know what else was boring?

    The show Eureka. The wife and I just finished it on Netflix. I kept waiting for it to get better but it never did. That was a show that had nothing at the center of it.

    It broke no new ground, said anything important, or left any lasting memories.

    Part of this was because they changed narrative direction twice in only five seasons and that just killed their chances at being a good show.

    Plus the characters were generally uninteresting. Except for Nathan Stark who they killed off.

    One of the central problems with the show, like in a lot of science-fiction, is all the resolutions via mechanism that happened. There's a problem! Invent something! Problem solved! You could have set the series in a fantasy universe where General Dynamics was instead a Wizzards Guild and had almost exactly the same plots. With the same resolutions except for scienceish mumbo-jumbo it was all fake Latin and arm waving that got it done.

    There's a lot more but I'm not interested enough to even think that much more about it.

    Alphas was a good show and I've enjoyed Warehouse 13 so far but Eureka just sucked.

  • ||

    Alphas was a goodish show. I wasn't surprised it got canceled, although it did annoy me that it happened three days after I finished streaming S1 and went on a futile search for S2.

  • Nephilium||

    Season 2 was really good, even though it ended on one hell of a cliff hanger.

  • Coeus||

    You liked Warehouse 13 more than Eureka? Is it that "narrative direction" thing? Cause I felt that improved Eureka. Warehouse 13 feels like watching the same damn show every episode.

  • Warrren||

    Yeah, W13 is a lot like the Librarian movies with Noah Wylie, Jane Curtain and Bob "Fuckmaster" Newhart. I really liked those so W13 was natural fit for me.

    I love how the artifacts work and got their power and Saul Rubinstein is always fun to watch. Plus the show goes to interesting places where Eureka was mostly uni-located.

  • Coeus||

    Fair enough. It just feels like they play it too safe. Eureka has a time travel show, and there's permanent changes (3x in fact) and I loved that. Shit, Henry's got 3 different timelines in his head. And his character shows it. He acts completely different than he used to.

    Warehouse 13 just goes back to default whenever they play with time. Seems a waste.

  • Warrren||

    Henry is the only interesting character. After him it's a wasteland.

    The worst was Shane. Just no point whatsoever to that guy. And Felicia Day was a train wreck. There was noting good about that character and watching her act it was mentally enervating.

  • Coeus||

    Definitely agree on Shane and Felicia Day.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Whoa, Felicia Day ended up on the show? I might have to give it a second chance.

  • paranoid android||

    I agree about the deus ex machina problem in Eureka. This also bothers me about Doctor Who, which I do enjoy a lot--but sooo many plots just end with "and then the Doctor built the Whatever Device and killed the monster", and there's never a sense the protagonists are in any believable danger because of it.

  • ||

    Whaaaat? The Doctor is often losing/ruining companions.

  • Cyto||

    The plot and writing of Dr. Who are great... because... uhm, Jenna-Louise Coleman. Yeah, acting and something about plot or something. Definitely Jenna-Louise Coleman. That's definitely some good writing.

  • Rasilio||

    I actually liked Eureka when it first started but I agree it began to jump the shark when they killed off Stark and finished it off with the time travel alternate history plotline.

    I still havn't watched the last season

  • TheZeitgeist||

    Cop saved big taxpayer $$$ and a couple trees worth of paper getting things sorted out right then and there. Nice.

  • Coeus||

    Check out how those loveable Policeone commenters feel about that 12 year old that caught a cop parking on the sidewalk:

    Future loser.
    What a little punk! The sergeant is obviously busy. He stopped only long enough to get something to drink; then right back to work.

    Personally, when people ask me for my name, I answer by firing off my name and badge number. Once those boxes are checked off for them, they have nowhere else to go. Shuts 'em down pretty quickly.

    As for this encounter, I don't fault the officer for driving off one bit. The kid should get a spanking and the kid's parents should get their asses chewed.
    That kid is an idiot. He was clearly trying to bait the officer into losing his temper or acting unprofessional. I think the officer handled the situation exactly how it should have been handled; a punk kid pulling a stupid stunt and not worth being taken seriously. I wouldn't have given him my information either, whether I was in the right or wrong.
  • ||

    The kid should get a spanking and the kid's parents should get their asses chewed.

    I bet that cop just wishes he could be the one to deliver it, too. What a fucking weird thing to say.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    The kid should get a spanking and the kid's parents should get their asses chewed.

    I showed it to the kids as yet another example of a cop who thinks he's superior to the people for whom he works and emphasized, again, that they aren't our friends.

  • ||

    Good example of the system working. Note, this officer was on paid admin leave for over a year. Why? Due process. And when a CRIMINAL trial is pending, almost always, the agency will have to wait until the criminal trial is resolved before beginning admin procedures (for firing or whatnot) lest they poison the criminal investigation. I've seen sloopy wank about this long admin leave on criminal occasions, as if the officer would not be punished by the dept. Far from it. You just can't poison the criminal prong with the admin/civil prong, since the latter allows compelled statements, etc. There needs to be a Chinese Wall set up.

    He was charged with manslaughter. He got a hung jury. Then, he was fired. He left his firearm where his 3 yr old son had access to it.

    Justice served. No double standard. Just a tragic incident, and an officer held accountable.

    http://seattletimes.com/html/l.....edxml.html

    Next time you see a cop get admin leave, it doesnt mean justice is being denied. It means DUE PROCESS is being respected.

  • Night Elf Mohawk||

    I guess you missed the story about the judge sentencing the cop to only probation specifically so that he didn't lose his job. Because that's exactly the standard that gets applied to everyone else once they are sucked into the legal system. I can't tell if you really believe some of the idiocy you write here or are just trolling.

  • Rasilio||

    So you are saying that if I get arrested for embezzling my company cannot fire me but rather must put me on administrative leave (with pay) until after the criminal trial is complete otherwise the fact that the company fired me could somehow poison said trial?

    Sorry it doesn't work that way, The threshold for losing your job for being a dumbass and embarrassing the employer is way the fuck lower than that for a criminal prosecution.

    Fact is if you are a cop and there is enough probable cause for a trial then you need to be fired there and then, if you are later exonerated then maybe, just maybe you can reapply to be hired again

    Also, any cop convicted of any crime, no matter how minor should be facing a minimum of 1 year in jail and permanent forfeiture of his license

  • Auric Demonocles||

    You don't deserve due process for employment.

  • WomSom||

    Sounds like your average cop to me dude.

    www.GotDatAnon.tk

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Progressive Puritans: From e-cigs to sex classifieds, the once transgressive left wants to criminalize fun.
  • Port Authoritarians: Chris Christie’s Bridgegate scandal
  • The Menace of Secret Government: Obama’s proposed intelligence reforms don’t safeguard civil liberties

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement