The Milwaukee police officer who shot and killed a black man – who was pointing a gun at him – is now receiving death threats.
Among the thousands of people who’ve taken to social media in the aftermath of the shooting, many have made threatening comments about the 24-year-old officer who shot and killed Sylville Smith on Saturday. The officer is also black, but we will not publish his name or picture due to the threats.
Along with pictures of the officer that are now all over the internet, people are posting comments like: “Now y’all see his face if he’s seen anywhere in the city drop him.” Another post called for a gun so the person could “shoot him right in his head.”
According to the Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee police are aware of the threats against the officer and against police in general.
“MPD has noted a disturbing national trend where users of social media have identified officers involved in uses of deadly force, threatened the officers and their families, and demonized them. Locally, we are aware of some general threats against our officers. MPD takes these threats seriously and is investigating.”
The police officer reportedly went to high school with Smith and the two apparently knew each other from the Sherman Park neighborhood, but took very different paths in life. Friends and acquaintances have told local media that both ‘grew up rough.’ Smith was arrested or cited nine times since 2011, according to Fox News.
The officer is reportedly staying with out-of-town relatives, while on administrative leave. The footage from his body camera is currently being evaluated by the state’s Department of Justice.
Gov. Scott Walker told Fox News— in response to the violence that’s erupted in Milwaukee after the shooting– that many of the criminals who’ve destroyed businesses over the last few days have been doing so “under the guise of a protest.”
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