Officer Mensah complaints dropped: 'Fight is far from over'

After the latest shooting, the Wauwatosa Police and Fire Commission (PFC) was considering punishment against Officer Joseph Mensah — including termination. That's not necessary now after a surprise resignation.

Mensah and the City of Wauwatosa signed off on a resignation agreement on Wednesday, Nov. 18 -- less than 24 hours after city leaders had approved the move.

"It was an inappropriate agreement to reach with him," said Attorney Kimberley Motley.

Mensah shot and killed three people while on duty during a five year period -- Alvin Cole, Antonio Gonzales and Jay Anderson Jr. All three shootings were ruled justified, clearing Mensah of criminal wrongdoing.

Joseph Mensah

As part of the separation agreement reached earlier in the week, Mensah will receive 13 months severance and other benefits. It's an agreement that the PFC was not a part of.

"The Police and Fire Commission did not participate, comment or otherwise have any involvement in the negotiation of the resignation agreement," said Greg Leahy, a PFC member.

Mensah was slated to go in front of the PFC — but that won't be happening.

Wauwatosa Police Department

On Thursday, Nov. 19, the PFC unanimously agreed to drop all complaints against Mensah.

"It’s very disappointing that the Police and Fire Commission sat on its hands, shoved its head in the sand once and again, just did the most cowardly thing," Motley said.

Motley represents the families of the three people killed. She said the latest development does not mean the battle is over.

"We’re going to continue to fight. This fight is far from over," Motley said.

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An independent investigator recommended termination for Mensah. However, his police backed him.

Mensah will be off the department come Nov. 30, but won't be off the payroll for months.


Group calls for Officer Mensah's removal; Wauwatosa PFC meets

Mensah had been cleared of criminal wrongdoing by the Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office in October.