According to the website of the District Attorney, after an incident such as the police killing of Tony Robinson Jr., the goals of the DA are to provide prompt and fair justice while also providing critical services to the family. Further, the DA’s office believes that peace and justice are not possible without progressive and fair law enforcement. The family of Tony Robinson, Jr. wonders what about this process is progressive and fair and also wonders what critical services have been provided to them. The Family calls on the DA, Ismael Ozanne to practice what his office preaches, to do what his office says it does – and that would lead to criminal charges; to an indictment of Officer Matt Kenny for killing Tony Robinson, Jr.
While the Madison Police Department and those affiliated with the investigation are trying to frame this as fair and independent, this is not a fair process; this is not a just process. What we know about how this case has been handled so far, is that it is unjust. We know that MPD got to pick who they wanted to oversee the investigation. We know that the Division of Criminal Investigation has worked in partnership with MPD on every step of the investigation. We know that Division of Criminal Investigation is staffed with retired Law enforcement officers. Although the law allows all of this, it is not an independent investigation by any ethical or moral standards. The process is biased. What we do know is that Tony was unarmed and was shot at least 7 times in the chest and head by Officer Kenny. This was neither reasonable nor necessary. We say to DA Ismael Ozanne, if you want to be just and fair, you have to indict.
Additionally, the Madison Police Department is neither progressive nor fair. They use the same standard that all police use around the country to justify lethal force which is one that asks whether the force was “reasonable” and “necessary.” Again, Tony’s murder was neither reasonable nor necessary. That is an unjust standard, and we need a progressive standard for the use of lethal force. Secondly, there is nothing progressive nor fair about the misleading documents MPD released last Friday. Most of the reports released by the police department about police incidents were not about Tony Robinson Jr. Again, I repeat most of the police incidents reports were not about Tony Robinson Jr. Furthermore, the information released by MPD had nothing to do with the 18 seconds that passed between when Officer Matt Kenny approached the apartment where Tony was and when he shot him at least 7 times in the chest and head. The facts we know for certain are that Tony was unarmed and was shot multiple times and killed by an officer who has a long history of using force against Madison residents and Tony was not the first person Kenny has killed. Chief Mike Koval has repeatedly said that Madison Police Department is living up to national standards of policing. But national standards have repeatedly found that it is both necessary and reasonable for police officers to kill unarmed black people. MPD continues to say that Madison is different, that the Madison Model is what sets us apart and will ensure that Madison is not like Ferguson. But as long as MPD does not operate by truly progressive standards, we will not have justice, and Madison will be like Ferguson.
Unity and peace will never exist in a community that allows police officers to murder with impunity. In the words of the great Martin Luther King Jr., The time is always right to do what is right; DA Ismael Ozanne, Do the right thing for our community and Indict. Thank you.
You can find a video of the Press Conference here