By Tim – MilwaukeeCitizenPress & Waukesha CopBlock (twitter)
In the latest move by Waukesha PD to further separate Citizens from their basic human and constitutionally enumerated rights, Chief Russel Jack has declared that Waukesha cops may stop and detain community members simply for filming them. Despite numerous rulings from State, Federal, and even the US Supreme Court (by inaction,) Jack has declared that, at least in this city, The Courts’ determinations are irrelevant.
June 26 I was hitting it hard. By 2:30 I had footage from 4 or 5 incidents and was getting ready to call it a night when I saw 5 or 6 police cars at South and Clinton. As I was pulling in to a public parking lot a large group of cops headed my way. I had been filming quite a few police scenes the weeks prior and although I’d been harassed and intimidated a few times, I’d not been detained for filming Waukesha cops.
One of the five officers to detain me, Officer Katrina Frey, asked if I had permission to park in the (public) lot declaring it private. She told me I needed to produce ID which I did. The cop with the glasses, later identified as Jeremy Bousman, was rather aggressive looking and had his hand on his gun. The video above shows what happened next.
Officer Frey wrote on CAD, the police database;
Timothy was observed copious amounts of times by multiple officers driving around in parts of the city throughout the evening and morning hours. He drives a moped and is out solely looking for police contacts so he can film them and insight problems. Wears camera around his neck. He stated he is “doing a story.”
I filed a complaint two months ago which was assigned to Sgt. Gregg Satula. He tried tirelessly to convince me to come in. He went so far as to suggest that he needed to meet with me in person, preferably in a room at the PD, because he couldn’t determine if I was really me. I can’t imagine many people secretly file citizen complaints on behalf of others.
We set up a time to speak by phone and he called (he looked up my number in the government database.) I asked him if he believed it was “me” and he stated he recognized the voice. He was determined to get me into the PD for a quasi interrogation. He stated to perform the investigation he’d need a written complaint in addition to my 1st written complaint. I guess they want two written complaints per complaint. I told him he’d have to go off my brief and precise document submitted as there was nothing more to say. I told him I felt it would be difficult for him to impartially investigate this complaint due to the “Blue Wall” and the fact that I felt his loyalties lie with his co-worker. “My loyalties lie with the organization” Satula said. Indeed sir.
Police Chief Russel Jack responded today with the following;
After a deliberative examination of the facts in this incident and a thorough review of all reports, no misconduct on the part of the officer has been found. We find the officer’s action to be appropriate and reasonable; well within the bounds of the law.
Based upon these findings, your complaint is officially unsubstantiated.
The Courts tend to disagree with Chief Jack. From HuffPost…
It’s the second federal appeals court to strike down a conviction for recording police. In August 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit ruled that a man wrongly arrested for recording cops could sue the arresting officers for violating his First Amendment rights.
That decision also found a broad First Amendment right to record on-duty government officials in public: “Gathering information about government officials in a form that can readily be disseminated to others serves a cardinal First Amendment interest in protecting and promoting ‘the free discussion of governmental affairs.'” And in fact, in that it strips police who make such arrests of their immunity from lawsuits, it’s an even stronger opinion. Of course, the police themselves rarely pay damages in such suits — taxpayers do.
The Supreme Court’s refusal to grant certiorari in the case doesn’t necessarily mean the justices endorse the lower court’s ruling. But it does mean that at least six of the current justices weren’t so opposed to the ruling that they felt the case needed to be heard.
Waukesha Police Chief and Deputy Police Chief Sue Waukesha Taxpayers
But despite being on the wrong side of the law on many issues Chief Russel Jack wants more money. He claims in a lawsuit filed with Deputy Police Chief Dennis Angle against Waukesha Citizens that he’s entitled to more money.
These two members of “Waukesha’s Finest” are suing us for nearly $45,000. In addition to other claims, these financially struggling public servants want annual raises of almost $6,000(Jack) and $2,500(Angle.)
Let’s take a look at the numbers (According to Sue Conway of City of Waukesha HR)
Chief Russel Jack 2013 (rounded)
Base Salary $121,000
Paid Hours 96 * $58/hour $6500
Vacation 192 * $58/hour $11,000 (1 month and 1 week per year)
Personal Days 16 * $58/hour $900
Holiday 72 * $58/hour $4200
The taxpayers also pay Jack $2600/year for not buying health insurance.
Total $165,000 per year
Deputy Chief Dennis Angle 2013 (rounded)
Base Salary $107,000
Sick Days 96 * $52/hour $5,000
Vacation 168 * $52/hour $8700
Personal Days 16 * $52/hour $800
Holiday Pay 72 * $52/hour $3700
Health Ins. $23,000
Dental Ins. $1,100
Total $168,300 per year
To put this all in perspective, the median household income in WI is $51,000. These two men alone are drawing 1 million tax dollars every three years.
Perhaps Chief Jack could start looking for a new job which will pay him what he feels he’s worth. He’s already facing a Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit and can’t even keep his own cops breaking simple traffic laws. I think Waukesha Taxpayers have given him enough. Hit the road Jack.
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