Wisconsin Standoff Society

In 1993, I watched the Waco, “Standoff” live on the NBC Nightly News as a young man while eating meatloaf in front of the TV with my family. What exactly is a, “Standoff?” In my early years, I understood a standoff  as an incident which one party was wrong and the State comes in to correct or murder them.  I had a hard time comprehending why the military blazed in with tanks and burned a bunch of kids alive but understood that if the government takes such action, it must be justified. I also vaguely remember, “Ruby Ridge.”

My old man is a Navy Veteran. He served 4 years during the War In Vietnam.  He worked on the ship’s engines to insure plenty of Vietnamese were killed by artillery from the Destroyer he occupied.  He was just under ten when the last known US Civil War Veteran passed. He grew up in a time when government mandated reefer madness prevailed and The US Public Health Service was busy secretly infecting impoverished Black Americans with syphilis. We kept a flag flying on the front porch to show our unwavering support for our government, almost without question.

I’ve attempted to expose my father to the idea that just because this government is ours doesn’t mean it has our best interests in mind, to little avail. I believe he’s too conditioned to understand the idea of True Liberty.

I guess this is why I wasn’t overly surprised when he told me about a standoff a few blocks from his and my mother’s home in Janesville WI. He had told me that the previous evening they were walking the dog when the neighborhood erupted with screeching tires, sirens, and heavily armed men. He of course wasn’t able to walk up the street he’s lived near for almost 40 years because some twenty-something cop said he couldn’t.

We try not to talk about political issues due to our differences but I couldn’t help but notice that after 4 days with nothing in the paper he seemed concerned with what may have happened.  I suggested he call the PD but after a week he hadn’t so I stepped in.

I contacted JPD about the incident in Oct. 2011 on Forest Park Blvd. Robin picked up the phone and I posed my question. She didn’t object to glancing at the log and dismissed it as a potential gun call where no gun was found.  I persisted with questions and she stated that a twelve year old had been taking out the garbage around dusk and saw a person in a car with a gun. He ran back into his home and told his mom who called it in.

In WI concealed carry is legal. Open carry is also legal and it isn’t uncommon to see people on the side of  the State Highways standing around with their shotguns or rifles heading into the fields to hunt wild game.  People occasionally walk the grocery store isles with a sidearm on their hip and there usually aren’t problems.

I continued to question Robin at the PD despite her increasing reluctance to answer my questions.  What’s the big secret? She reiterated that no gun was found and nobody was arrested so it wasn’t a big deal. I asked if the gun, “Suspect” was pulled out at gunpoint or searched. She stated she didn’t know. I asked if the dispatch actually vetted this child personally, again, no apparent answer. She stated I wouldn’t be able to obtain the police reports because none exist. Just a brief dispatch log.

It turned out that the gun was actually a cell phone.  And the two alleged “gunmen” were 17 year old-ish boyfriend and girlfriend stopping by the house quick.  My Dad said the cops were yelling but he couldn’t hear exactly what was being said. I’m guessing this is an experience these young people will never forget. It may seem like a funny story in hindsight but on the other hand, I’ve never had multiple guns pointed at my torso.  I have been inadvertently swept by a live firearms and it really pisses me off.

Waukesha Standoff Society

On a regular basis the Waukesha Police play soldier in our neighborhoods. They call in the county tank and halt our outdoor activities by the sounds of cops yelling on a PA system.  I’ve done several videos of these standoff when I happen upon them. I don’t use a scanner but every month and a half or so I can usually find one by just cruising.

They bring the shields and AR’s but overwhelmingly just hang out and soak up the overtime. I don’t often see anything in the news other than the fact that one of these occurred.  It seems that if the police call these incidents, “Medicals” they can get away without scrutiny or further information.  I’ve taken video of three in the last year or so.

I don’t need to ask what precipitates a standoff. Pretty much anything in this area. Perhaps a neighbor hears an argument and you choose not to answer the door for the cops? Maybe you’ve had a few drinks and throw on your favorite Metallica CD. As we all know the police have no legal duty to, “Protect us.”  What if an, “Emotionally disturbed person who is potentially armed” is greeted by the mom or brother instead of a heavily fortified militarized sect of the police. Perhaps a well known,  friendly, willing,  neighbor would produce better results than flash bang grenades and sub-machine guns.

As is common,  in the video above, no gun, according to local YouTube friends, and no real threat by the female suspect. I’d love to tell you the whole story but it seems to be a secret.

It appears standoffs will be entrenched in Waukesha culture for the time being.

John Freeman – Milwaukee area Copblock


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