Bowen Says Officer Mensah Fired The Gun
Rep. Bowen disputes police account, says Mensah, not protestors, fired gun at officer's house.
In a world where seemingly every altercation is recorded on video, a confrontation outside the home of suspended Wauwatosa police officer Joseph Mensah has become an issue of he-said-she-said.
The Wauwatosa Police Department put out a statement Sunday afternoon that said a group of approximately 50 to 60 people had gathered outside Mensah’s home Saturday night and began to vandalize the property.
“Officer Mensah attempted to establish a dialog with the group but was ultimately physically assaulted outside of his home. As Officer Mensah retreated into his home, armed protestors approached the rear door and a single shotgun round was discharged by a member of the group into Officer Mensah’s backdoor,” wrote the department.
Mensah is suspended pending an investigation into three on-duty killings in the past five years for which he was previously cleared of any criminal wrong-doing. He was not wearing a body camera during any of the incidents. Protests in Wauwatosa have been centered on the killings, even after a city commission voted to suspend Mensah in mid-July.
“What I observed on Saturday outside Officer Mensah’s home was an out-of-control, yelling & aggressive man that came out of his house with the goal to provoke peaceful protestors and incite violence,” wrote Bowen in a statement.
“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 protestor shot at the back door. That’s the biggest lie. Joseph Mensah chose to engage with a protestor, and pulled the trigger on that individual’s firearm,” wrote Bowen.
“This was not the first protest outside of an individual’s home; there have been protests and gospel concerts held in front of many influential leader’s homes. Chief Weber, Chief Morales, DA Chisholm & Mayor Barrett. All of those times were peaceful and occurred without incident. This time would’ve been no different had Officer Mensah not decided to confront the crowd,” wrote Bowen. “I personally believe that he can not be trusted to tell the truth.”
Activist Vaun Mayes also characterized Mensah as the aggressor that grabbed the weapon.
“Last night, protesters came to my girlfriend’s house while I was there and tried to kill me,” wrote Mensah in a Facebook post. “We were both assaulted, punched and ultimately shot at several times. A shotgun round missed me by inches. Not once did I ever swing back or reciprocate any [of] the hate that was being directed at me.”
Talk radio host Dan O’Donnell said the protesters tried to murder Mensah, who is Black. “The local media is actively downplaying this story to preserve the ‘peaceful protesters’ narrative. These are violent terrorists, plain and simple,” tweeted O’Donnell on Sunday.
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