State Rep. Chris Taylor
Press Release

Rep. Taylor’s statement on Dontre Hamilton Case

"Our new law also requires that when no charging decisions are issued following an officer-involved death, the criminal report must be released to the public."

By - Dec 22nd, 2014 01:41 pm

MADISON – One of the lead authors of Wisconsin’s law requiring an independent investigation of officer-involved deaths, Representative Chris Taylor (D-Madison), released the following statement after Milwaukee District Attorney John Chisholm announced he would not press charges against the officer who shot and killed Dontre Hamilton nearly eight months ago:

“I offer my sincere condolences to Dontre Hamilton’s family and his community regarding his tragic death.

“In co-authoring the only state law in the nation mandating an independent investigation of officer-involved deaths, it was my intent to help remove the perception of bias, and bias itself, in these investigations.  It is critical that the process by which these incidents are investigated is fair, transparent and independent.

“One of the key points of our new law is to prevent colleagues who work in the same department from investigating each other when an officer-involved death occurs, as it is impossible in any profession to impartially and objectively investigate coworkers.

“Our new law also requires that when no charging decisions are issued following an officer-involved death, the criminal report must be released to the public.  I will review this report to evaluate how our new law is implemented, and consider additional ways to ensure our process in Wisconsin is as fair, open and independent as possible.  Our new law was an important first step, upon which we must continue to improve.”

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One thought on “Rep. Taylor’s statement on Dontre Hamilton Case”

  1. Edward Susterich says:

    Clearly, the results of the independent investigation done in the tragic Dontre Hamilton case resulted in an outcome that best serves the justice system. There is no happy ending, but justice was served

    In contrast, the Ferguson grand jury approach failed miserably in all respects.

    Lost in all the heated comments– we as a society have failed to address the needs of the mentally ill. The family of Dontre Hamilton were in need of help. City, county, state, and federal governments— all continue to ignore the plight of those in need of help. Bankers, 1%’er’s corporations all get favorable treatment– but not those really in need.

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