Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Under the Gun: Milwaukee Police Chief Flynn on Gun ControlSubmitted: 02/14/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm


MILWAUKEE - Whatever happens on the state level regarding gun control, you can bet law enforcement in Milwaukee will have a say in it.

That's why we sent Newswatch 12's Lyndsey Stemm to Milwaukee to speak with Police Chief Edward Flynn, and County Sheriff David Clarke.

The Chief and Sheriff famously, and quite vocally, disagree on many things... and gun control is no exception.

Both sat down with us to share their personal philosophies. Tonight we bring you Chief Flynn.

Milwaukee Police Chief Flynn says he's been desperate for legislators to help him address gun violence in his city.

"I have been on the record saying I didn't think there was anything horrible enough that could happen in this country that would give our politicians the moral courage to entertain the discussion. Maybe 20 dead babies is it," says Flynn, referring to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

Flynn believes gun control is an issue in American Politics that seems to be immune from rational discussion. But he still has a city to protect.

"The great challenge for the city and the police departments, is how do we disarm criminals," says Flynn.

Ironically one of the things making it difficult for the police to deter criminals from gun crime, is the law.

"It just boggles my mind no matter how many times you're caught with a gun in the state of Wisconsin if you're not a felon, it's a misdemeanor every single time," says Timothy Keller, a Milwaukee Police Department Tactical Enforcement Unit Officer.

"It's a joke. Right now for my career criminals it's more dangerous to get caught without a gun than to get caught with their gun," says Flynn.

Jeri Bonavia from the Wisconsin Anti-Violence Effort was part of Vice President Biden's task force that developed some of President Obama's proposed gun control legislation. She sides with Flynn in wanting tougher qualifications to own a weapon.

"No matter how many times you've been arrested and convicted of violent misdemeanants you still qualify to purchase a gun in this state," says Bonavia.

"The other thing we need; we need it to be a felony to straw purchase. If you go in there and buy a gun from your boyfriend the felon, you should know you're going to go to jail," says Flynn.

Flynn says things like universal background checks is something law-abiding people should be willing to put up with to limit victimization. He says no constitutional right is immune from regulation.

"We've made free speech work, and prevented libel. We've made freedom of religion work, and we've prevented human sacrifice. Can we not figure out a way to make the individual right to own firearms and protect yourselves work in such a way as to place some reasonable limitations on the wrong people?" says Flynn.

The theory that arming more citizens will keep criminals at bay doesn't sit well with him.

"All I'd like to see is our elected officials and citizens decide mutually that this issues is not beyond us; that we don't throw up our hands and say the only solution to crime in this city, or the only solution to mad med with semi-automatic firearms, is more firearms," says Flynn.

He says he's not laboring under the belief that his ideas can solve gun crimes completely.

"What I believe is that we can make murder more difficult in the city, and we can make mass murder more difficult. We'll never eliminate either; I know that, we all know that. The challenge is can we make it harder for the wrong people to get access to firearms and use them," says Flynn.

Flynn began as Police Chief in Milwaukee in 2008, and was sworn in for his second term last year.

The Chief represents one side of the gun control debate. Tomorrow we'll have Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, who has very different opinions on the subject.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

MADISON - A Marine veteran died from a toxic mix of more than a dozen drugs at a U.S. Veterans Affairs facility in Tomah, Wisconsin.

Now his family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the U.S. government.

The federal lawsuit claims VA caregivers improperly prescribed and administered drugs to Jason Simcakoski, who died in 2014.

It also accuses the VA of failing to provide adequate emergency care for Simcakoski when he was found unresponsive.

The lawsuit was filed Monday by Simcakoski's widow.

Last year, the VA's inspector general ruled that deficiencies in care led to Simcakoski's death.

One physician was fired.

+ Read More

MADISON - Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson will be making his first campaign stop in Wisconsin this week.

Johnson will hold a campaign rally Thursday night in Milwaukee.

Third party candidates are getting more attention this election.

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton both struggle with low favorability numbers both in Wisconsin and nationally.

The latest Marquette University Law School poll released earlier this month showed Johnson with 10 percent support among registered voters....and 9 percent among likely voters.

Clinton led among registered voters with 42 percent, followed by Trump at 33 percent.

+ Read More

Play Video

MERCER - A few times, people in Mercer almost gave up.

For years, they had dreamed of a paved hiking and biking trail that would improve the look of their town, provide a new recreational outlet, and connect to the trail system in Vilas County.

More than once, it looked like it might not happen.

+ Read More

Play Video

MERRILL - Going back to school can be a fun time. A school in Merrill wants to make sure its students stay safe.

Trinity Lutheran Grade School makes sure its students know the importance of crosswalk safety. 

"Once they're outside, they're usually pretty good," said Jeff Holt, a teacher and the school's safety patrol advisor. "Again, understanding how important it is following the safety rules. They see what could potentially happen if they don't."

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - Golfers in Wausau know their money will go to a good cause after Monday.

The Marshfield Clinic teamed up with Furniture and Appliance Mart for their 14th annual Fore a Cure golf outing.
 
The outing raises awareness and money for breast cancer detection equipment.

+ Read More

WOOD COUNTY - An 18-year-old Wood County man will spend more than a decade in prison for killing a woman last fall.

A jury found Miguel-Angel Oertel guilty of killing 47-year-old Theresa Coates at her home in Saratoga last August.

+ Read More

Play Video

MINOCQUA - Successful Lac du Flambeau mixed martial artist Frank Schuman found himself in trouble with the law again last week.

Schuman is charged with 11 counts related to battery and domestic abuse in Vilas County.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here