Derek Williams Death Prompts New Investigations Police Misconduct

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As previously reported on this blog, a Medical Examiner changes the ruling to homicide as the civil rights lawyers of Samster, Konkel & Safran represent the long-term girlfriend of Derek Williams, on behalf of their three children.

Mr. Williams died in Milwaukee Police Department (“MPD”) custody back in July 2011. Initially, the investigation into Mr. Williams’ death determined that he died of natural causes. Now, the Milwaukee County medical examiner has revised his ruling and determined that Mr. Williams’ death was a homicide. A newly released MPD squad car video shows Mr. Williams gasping for air and begging the MPD officers to help him during the last few minutes of his life.

The United States Department of Justice is now considering a federal criminal investigation into the death of Mr. Williams, as well as an investigation into a possible pattern of civil rights violations committed by MPD officers.

“We are taking a very close look at it,” U.S. Attorney James Santelle said.

In addition, the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office will appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Mr. Williams’ death. The Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission will also re-examine the incident.

Milwaukee Personal Injury Attorneys for Civil Rights Cases in Wisconsin

The civil rights attorneys of Samster, Konkel & Safran encourage these new investigations into the tragic death of Mr. Williams. We believe that the U.S. Attorney should conduct a complete review of the MPD, so that future civil rights violations can be prevented. Our Milwaukee personal injury attorneys also express our gratitude to the excellent reporters of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, who have done a tremendous job investigating the circumstances of Mr. Williams’ death. Please see JSonline for the latest reporting by the Journal Sentinel.

If you wish to donate to the memorial fund established to care for Mr. Williams’ children, donations can be dropped off at the offices of Samster, Konkel & Safran, 11063 West Bluemound Road, Suite 205, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin 53226. Checks can be made payable to the “Derek M. Williams Jr. Children’s Memorial Fund.”

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