Convicted felon accused of fatally shooting man trying to break up fight near 20th and Keefe

Jamal Draine

MILWAUKEE -- Charges were filed Friday, Feb. 28 against a Milwaukee man prosecutors said pulled the trigger near 20th Street and Keefe Avenue on Feb. 16 -- killing a 23-year-old man who was trying to break up an argument. The alleged shooter shouldn't have had his hands on a gun in the first place because he's a convicted felon.

Jamal Draine, 22, faces one count of first-degree reckless homicide, as party to a crime, use of a dangerous weapon, and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.

According to a criminal complaint, police responded to the scene for a ShotSpotter alert and found the victim face down in the kitchen, gasping for air. He was taken to the hospital, where he died in surgery. An autopsy revealed the cause of death was a single gunshot wound to the back.

A witness told investigators she saw two men standing in the doorframe and an argument occurred between those two men, the victim, and his brother. She said, "Everything happened fast, and she heard two gunshots." A second witness provided the same account, the complaint said.

The victim's brother said during the argument, the victim tried breaking up the fight. He identified Draine as the shooter, the complaint said, telling investigators, "That’s him. I don’t forget a face. I know the whole face.”

A second brother of the victim said there had been an ongoing argument with a man who showed up at the home with a friend. Prosecutors said that friend was Draine. The victim's brother said the man who showed up at the home handed Draine a firearm, before punching the brother in the face. There was a brief tussle, and he heard a shot. He also identified Draine as the shooter, telling investigators he was "2,000% sure."

Amid the investigation, police received a call from one of the two men who showed up at the home that day -- indicating he wanted to turn himself in but was scared. He identified the shooter as Draine, the complaint said, and indicated he "wanted Jamal in custody before turning himself in." The complaint said the man turned himself in on Feb. 18.

That man told investigators there was a fight, and he handed a revolver to Draine. He said after the shooting, they ran, and Draine gave him back the revolver.

The complaint noted Draine was convicted of substantial battery in November 2018, and therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm. He was sentenced to serve 360 days in the House of Correction in December 2018 in that case.

Draine made his initial appearance in court on Friday. Cash bond was set at $100,000, and a preliminary hearing was scheduled for March 6.