REQUIRE AN UNBIASED POLICE REVIEW PROCESS

D. The Unlawful Use of Deadly Force Against Bell.

  1. The officers pushed Bell towards the left side of a Nissan that was parked in the driveway close to the garage.
  2. Bell’s feet were perpendicular to the driver’s side front tire.
  3. The officers threw Bell over the hood of the Nissan with such force that the left wheel well of the car was dented and the driver’s side mirror broke.
  4. Bell’s body was bent over at the waist face down on the hood of the car.
  5. Bell’s chest was on the hood of the car.
  6. Bell’s head was pushed against the car.
  7. Bell's legs were up against the tire of the left front fender
  8. Lieutenant Krueger had Bell pinned against the left front fender of the vehicle so tightly that his body could not move.
  9. Lieutenant Krueger was holding Bell in a “bear hug.”
  10. Officer Strausbaugh was to Bell’s right side.
  11. Officer Gonzales ran up to the scene through the backyard and ran towards the officers.
  12. Bell’s hands were still behind his back in handcuffs, with the handcuffs reflecting the light from the floodlights.
  13. As Officer Gonzales was running in the backyard, he was already drawing his gun.
  14. Officer Strausbaugh said that Bell was going for his weapon, and Officer Strausbaugh knew that deadly force was not justified
  15. Bell was not going for Officer Strausbaugh’s gun and he never had his hand on Officer Strausbaugh’s gun, as his hands were still behind his back in handcuffs.
  16. Shantae Bell saw Bell’s hands behind his back in handcuffs when he was pinned against the car.
  17. Kim Bell saw Bell’s hand behind his back in handcuffs when he was pinned against the car.
  18. Francis Clark, the Bell’s next door neighbor, also saw a handcuff on Bell’s right hand when Bell was pinned against the car, and he never saw Bell going for one of the officers’ guns.
  19. A subsequent visual inspection of Officer Strausbaugh’s gun did not reveal any fingerprints on Officer Strausbaugh’s gun..
  20. Officer Strausbaugh’s gun was also swabbed and subjected to DNA tests, and none of Bell’s DNA was found on the gun.
  21. The area was illuminated well enough for Officer Gonzales to see that Bell did not have Officer Strausbaugh’s gun.
  22. Officer Strausbaugh’s yelling that Bell was going for the gun was improper and inaccurate.
  23. Officer Strausbaugh’s false communication set the fatal shooting sequence into motion.
  24. Officer Strausbaugh never said that his gun was still in his holster.
  25. Officer Strausbaugh knew Bell was going to be shot.
  26. An officer was yelling “Shoot, shoot.”
  27. Officer Gonzales had his gun in his right hand, ran right up in between Lieutenant Krueger and Officer Strausbaugh, and shot Bell in the head.
  28. It is objectively unreasonable and excessive for Officer Gonzales to shoot Bell when Officer Gonzales was in a position to see that Bell was unarmed. Officer Gonzales’ primary goal was weapon retention, and he was in a position to apply physical force to ensure the gun never left the holster, including holding the gun in the gun, breaking Bell’s grip of the gun, using a device to break Bell’s arms, wrists, or hands, or any other technique.
  29. Bell went limp.
  30. Shantae Bell screamed “You killed him, you killed him.”
  31. Shantae and Kim Bell were ordered to go back into the house.
  32. Officer Weidner removed his handcuffs from the crime scene.
  33. The Kenosha Police Department’s Policy and Procedures on deadly force specifically stated that “it is the policy of the Kenosha Police Department shall never be resorted to until every other reasonable means of apprehension or defense has been exhausted.”
  34. Section XII A. 1. of the Kenosha Police Department’s Policy and Procedure Manual in effect in November of 2004 expressly advised the defendants that they may use deadly force only “[a]s a last resort in the defense of oneself, when there is reasonable cause to believe that the officer is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm.”
  35. Section XII A. 2 of the Kenosha Police Department’s Policy and Procedure Manual in effect in November of 2004 expressly advised the defendants that they may use deadly force only “[a]s a last resort in the defense of another person, whom the officer has reasonable cause to believe is being unlawfully attacked and is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm.”
  36. According to Wisconsin Defensive and Arrest Tactics manual, deadly force is justified only where a threat is “imminent,” which requires that a suspect has intent, a weapon, and a delivery system.
  37. The defendants’ consultant on police practice and procedure, Robert Willis, agreed that if Officer Gonzales knew that Bell never touched Officer Strausbaugh’s gun, then deadly force was not justified:

Q: I want you to assume that Michael Bell was in the position described by Lieutenant Krueger, the dynamic that was occurring at the hood of the car that is described by Lieutenant Krueger during the course of his testimony. I want you to assume that absolutely nothing else in this whole scenario that you've read changes, with one exception, and that one fact is that Michael Bell did not have his hand on Officer Strausbaugh’s gun.

Would you agree that if Officer Gonzales knew that fact, and all the rest of the dynamic facts existed as have been described in this record, that use of lethal force would be an unjustified violation of his training?

A: I would agree with that.