The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported today that police reports from the January incident with Sterling Brown do not match the body camera video. As noted in my first piece on Brown, initial police reports painted Brown as “agitated” and “aggressive”. The 30 minutes of video released by Police Chief Alfonso Morales indicate otherwise.
Officer Gram was not only the first officer to confront Brown, but also the officer whose body camera documented the encounter. In his own report, he wrote that Brown had incited the confrontation, “Because of his aggressive body language and actions, I felt Brown wanted to get into the vehicle and flee. Because of this I called for another squad.”
A sergeant then called on scene reported Brown had approach his vehicle in, “an aggressive manner.” As noted by the Journal, neither of these claims became evident upon watching the body camera’s video.
Nowhere in the video does Brown ever act as though he wanted to flee. What is more, nowhere in the video does Brown ever act as though he was armed and dangerous. Yet, it was reported that officers feared that was the case.
Is a ‘suspicious’ movement, such as taking your hands in and out of your pockets on a cold January night, enough to lead a reasonably prudent officer, especially within the context of this parking violation, that Brown was armed and dangerous? To connoisseurs of the Fourth Amendment? Probably not? To the average American? You can decide.
This is a developing story. Check back for more content related to the Sterling Brown case.