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Chief Wahl's Blog

Our Commitment to Continuous Improvement and MPD Notable Calls 07/08/2020 to 07/09/2020

July 9, 2020 9:01 AM


Riots/Unrest & Sentinel Event Reviews

The OIR Report and Madison Police Department Policy & Procedure Review Ad Hoc Committee both recommended that MPD implement an incident review process, to analyze significant incidents and identify areas for improvement.  The department implemented an SOP to address this recommendation earlier this year.  The Ad Hoc Committee further recommended that MPD work with the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice when implementing this process.

What is the Quattrone Center?  They are affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and work on a number of initiatives to improve the criminal justice system.  One aspect of this work is the "sentinel event review," where an undesirable outcome (like a wrongful conviction, for example) is subjected to a thorough review process.  The process is intended to identify factors that led to the undesirable outcome (like policy, training, or culture) and make recommendations to correct them (to avoid the same undesirable outcome in the future).  Also referred to as a "root cause analysis" this work bears some similarity to how the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigates aviation crashes.  The investigation identifies the cause of a crash, then specific recommendations are put in place so that the same thing does not cause any future crashes (this work has been remarkably successful in virtually eliminating domestic, commercial aviation crashes).

In light of the Ad Hoc and OIR recommendations, MPD has been working with the Quattrone Center.  Grant funding had been approved, and the process of reviewing a 2019 event was getting started (though delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic).  However, in early June – after three days of riots and unrest in Madison – I reached out to the Executive Director of the Quattrone Center and asked if we could change the focus of their work, to instead examine the City's response to the first week of riots/unrest/protests.  He agreed, and we have started the early steps of moving this process forward.  The Quattrone Center is an experienced and respected entity that will perform a thorough review.  Their work will be independent and transparent. 

MPD is committed to continuous improvement, and I look forward to working with the Quattrone Center as they do this valuable work.



The information provided below about some of the calls officers responded to is derived from notes provided by MPD Officers-In-Charge (OIC) at the end of their shifts. Most narratives represent early and preliminary information that was gathered by an OIC from those in the field who were actively working cases. The OIC is sharing what they were being told, in the moment. In many instances, facts and circumstances, even the type of crime listed, can change as officers, detectives and investigators continue their work.

From 6:00 a.m. on 07/08/2020 through 6:00 a.m. on 07/09/2020, MPD received 439 calls for service.  This number does not include parking complaints or 911 misdials.  A breakdown of the calls for service per district is as follows: Central (79), East (99), Midtown (50), North (78), South (49), West (57), and Other (27).  "Other" is used for calls that either do not have a sector or the sector is not in the City.  This would be used in the case of one of our officers assisting another law enforcement agency.  



  • Priority calls only from 6:29 p.m. to 8:05 p.m. due to calls for service.

EAST: Stolen Vehicle – 6:09 a.m.  Officers received a report of a stolen vehicle.  Attempt to locate aired.  The vehicle was listed as stolen in the appropriate databases.  Investigation continuing. 

SOUTH: Stolen Vehicle – 7:42 a.m.  Officers received a report of a stolen vehicle from a residential garage.  The garage door had been left open overnight and the keys were in the vehicle.  The victim's purse was also in the vehicle.   Attempt to locate aired.  The vehicle was listed as stolen in the appropriate databases.  Investigation continuing. 

EAST: Stolen Vehicle – 9:20 a.m.  The complainant's friend borrowed her rental car and refuses to return it.  The rental car is overdue to the rental agency.  Attempt to locate aired.  The vehicle was listed as stolen in the appropriate databases.  Investigation continuing.  

WEST: Disturbance – 4:20 p.m.  Officers responded to the mall for a disturbance.  A 33-year-old female was cited for resisting after she caused a disturbance in the mall (where she is banned from) and was not cooperative with officers.  The female was cited/released from the scene.

CITY-WIDE: Assist Police – 5:53 p.m.   Officers made contact with a driver/vehicle that was stopped after the WI State Patrol observed the driver/vehicle driving at speeds up to 144 mph.  The WI State Patrol attempted to stop the vehicle but they ended their pursuit.  Investigation continuing.  ** A stolen vehicle was also observed by the WI State Patrol that was recovered by officers. 

EAST: Domestic Disturbance – 6:27 p.m.  Officers responded to a residence for sounds of a disturbance.  Contact was made with two subjects (female victim and 28-year-old male suspect).  The victim reported that the suspect grabbed her by the neck.  The suspect was arrested for domestic battery and domestic disorderly conduct.

NORTH: Battery – 7:57 p.m.  Officers responded to a disturbance involving a 23-year-old male.  The suspect was engaging in physically assaultive behavior.  The suspect was arrested/charged with battery and disorderly conduct (two counts).    

CENTRAL: Check Person – 8:45 p.m.  Officers had contact with a subject who has been physically violent recently.  Journey Mental Health consulted.  An emergency detention was sought and approved.  The subject was transported to Winnebago.

NORTH: Weapons Offense – 9:44 p.m.  A subject contacted officers who were investigating another incident to report that he had a gun pulled on him.  No injuries sustained.  Investigation continuing. 

MIDTOWN: Check Person – 10:16 p.m.  Officers responded to a residence to check the welfare of a subject.  The subject was found to have stabbed himself.  The subject was intoxicated.  Journey Mental Health consulted.  The subject was treated by EMS and conveyed to a local hospital.  An emergency detention will be explored once the subject is sober.  Investigation continuing. 

NORTH: Weapons Offense – 11:56 p.m.  Officers responded to Northport Dr for multiple reports of numerous subjects armed with guns and vehicles racing in the area.  Witness statements varied.  Probable cause was developed for one suspect (28-year-old male) for waiving a gun around.  Middleton PD located the suspect and detained him for MPD.  Officers took custody of the suspect and transported him to jail for disorderly conduct while armed.  Investigation continuing. 


EAST: Domestic Disturbance – 12:17 a.m.  Officers responded to a residence for a disturbance reportedly involving guns.  The two suspects (50-year-old female and 28-year-old male) were not on scene when officers arrived.  A firearm was located/recovered.  Probable cause developed to arrest the suspects, once they are located.  Investigation continuing. 

WEST: Weapons Offense – 2:56 a.m.  Officers responded to the 7900 block of Tree Lane for a report of shots fired.  Offices located 25 shell casings in the area.  No reported injuries.  Two uninvolved vehicles sustained damage.  Incident Report on MPD's website completed.  Investigation continuing.

MIDTOWN: Residential Burglary – 7:08 a.m.  Officers responded to a residential burglary.  The garage and door to the open were left open/unlocked.  Entry was made to the home.  Keys were stolen and a vehicle was stolen.  Attempt to locate aired. The vehicle was listed as stolen in the appropriate databases.     

Posted by: Chief Wahl

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