Wisconsin police officer stands by claims that he was shot at by protesters outside girlfriend's home
Police officer says he was nearly killed when protesters swarmed his girlfriend’s home
Wauwatosa, Wis. Police Officer Joseph Mensah, who is currently suspended amid review of the shooting death of a 17-year-old, tells his story on ‘Fox & Friends.’
A Black Wisconsin police officer said on Wednesday that he “100 percent” believes that he “was shot at” after a group of protesters gathered outside his girlfriend’s house, while a Democratic state representative, who was reportedly at the protest, challenges that claim.
Wauwatosa Police Officer Joseph Mensah told “Fox & Friends” that he was at his girlfriend’s house on Saturday, helping her move, when protesters jumped on the U-Haul truck he had parked behind the home and were “breaking windows.”
Police said a group of about 50 to 60 people gathered outside the private residence in Wauwatosa, about 7 miles west of Milwaukee, and began vandalizing the home.
“We went outside to pretty much get them to stop it and when we did that, that's when I was assaulted and my girlfriend was assaulted,” Mensah said. “I went back to the house while we were trying to get into the house and we were assaulted again after they followed us with weapons and that's when the shot happened.”
Mensah wrote in a statement on Facebook on Sunday that the shotgun round “missed me by inches.”
“Not once did I ever swing back or reciprocate any hate that was being directed at me,” he said. “I am all for peaceful protests, even against me, but this was anything beyond peaceful. They threw toilet paper in her trees, broke her windows, and again, shot at both of us as they were trying to kill me.”
Mensah said there were children inside the home.
Wauwatosa Police received assistance from neighboring departments in breaking up the crowd and an investigation is ongoing.
According to Fox 6, Mensah has been involved in the shooting deaths of three people while in the line of duty. Two of the shootings, one in 2015 and another in 2016, were ruled justified. But Mensah was suspended last month for the shooting death of 17-year-old Alvin Cole in February, according to the television station, which added that the case is still under review by the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office.
On Wednesday Mensah told “Fox & Friends” that the protests at his girlfriend’s home “had been going on over the last few weeks.”
Wauwatosa's mayor Dennis McBride released a statement acknowledging that various groups have protested in recent weeks demanding that Mensah be fired over the shooting.
“The City of Wauwatosa has always supported and protected the right to peaceful protest,” McBride said. “Last night’s event was not a peaceful protest; it was criminal behavior. If the perpetrators of this criminal behavior are identified, they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
BLACK WISCONSIN OFFICER SAYS PROTESTERS 'TRIED TO KILL ME' DURING PHYSICAL ASSAULT AT GIRLFRIEND'S HOME
McBride has asked the city’s police chief and the city administrator to “transition” Mensah from WPD employment. During an interview on “The Dan O’Donnell Show” late last month, Mensah said he had fired his weapon in self-defense, and that he believes he was suspended to appease protesters.
Democratic State Rep. David Bowen has said that Mensah fabricated elements of violence outside his girlfriend’s home on Saturday, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
In a statement posted on Twitter Bowen said he believes Mensah “can not [sic] be trusted to tell the truth” and called the account of how the gun was fired “the biggest lie.” Bowen claims that Mensah “chose to engage with a protester” and pulled the trigger on that person’s gun.
“No one tried to kill him or his girlfriend. That’s a lie. No one tried to enter his home. That’s a lie. There weren’t several shots fired. Another lie. No protester shot at the back door,” Bowen wrote.
In response Mensah told “Fox & Friends” that “there is a version of events that I have and there is a version that he has all based on our own perspectives.”
“Whether you want to believe my perspective or not, or his perspective or not, it doesn't change the fact and there are facts and there are [sic] evidence in this case that do support my version of the events and do not support his,” Mensah continued.
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Host Brian Kilmeade asked Mensah if the situation he is currently in makes him question his decision to get into law enforcement.
“Not at all,” Mensah said in response. “I knew exactly what I signed up for.”
“We sign up for this to protect people, to serve people. Unfortunately, my city has not allowed me to do that,” he continued.
Fox News’ Bradford Betz contributed to this report.
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