Picketing Milwaukee Sheriff for justice, transparency and end to in-custody deaths
Milwaukee, WI – On Tuesday, March 21, members of the Justice for Brieon Green Coalition picketed in front of the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office. The picket was originally planned to pressure Sheriff Denita Ball after she failed to hold the promises she made to the coalition – allowing members to tour the county jail and upload the standard operating procedures to the website for public access.
However, less than two days after this picket was called, media reported that Terrance Mack, age 37, had died inside the county jail. Mack represents the third death inside the county jail since December. Thus, the picket was also a response to this latest in-custody death.
The 20 people who showed up to the picket walked in front of the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) for just under an hour. In a show of solidarity with those who’ve lost their lives in the county jail, much of the event was met by a large amount of encouragement and sympathy from passersby.
Alan Chavoya, outreach chair of the Milwaukee Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, said, “We have to come together. When we come together we can put the pressure on these people and force them to act.”
The Justice for Brieon Green Coalition is demanding that MCSO to allow members of the Justice for Brieon Green Coalition to tour the jail; that MCSO to hold a public town hall with Denita Ball now; transparency in all cases and in how the jail operates; and, independent (non-law enforcement) investigations into the deaths and into the conditions of the jail.
There is no oversight body for the MCSO. Only Sheriff Ball can hold people accountable in these cases, and only she can create policies that will ensure the safety of the people in her custody. She hasn’t shown a willingness to do either of these two things. The Justice for Brieon Green Coalition will continue to pressure Sheriff Ball and fight for justice for those who have died inside the county jail.
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