Tensions continued to rise in Madison, Wis., on Saturday, a day after the Madison police department named the officer who killed an unarmed black youth Friday.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported Saturday that Matt Kenny, 45, shot Anthony “Tony” Robinson, 19, during a “check person” disturbance call. The slaying ignited multiple protests in Madison on Friday night and into Saturday.
“While en route, responding officers were advised that additional calls were being received about the same individual,” the police report said. “When contacted, a struggle ensued and the 19-year-old man, who was identified as the individual engaged in the reported behavior, was shot and subsequently died.”
Madison Police Chief Mike Koval said Friday that the confrontation occurred at 6:30 p.m. on Williamson in east Madison. He said he released Kenny’s identity given the “volatile place” the shooting had left community members in.
“There’s no doubt we have to be clear about this: He was unarmed,” Koval told reporters on Friday in Madison.
The incident was not Kenny’s first involving gunfire. On July 15, 2007, he also shot and killed Ronald Brandon, 48. Koval said Kenny was cleared of criminal charges in that response as Brandon pointed a pellet gun at officers.
Koval said Kenny had served in Madison’s police force for over 12 years. Kenny’s department biography said he spent nine years in the U.S. Coast Guard before that.
Robinson graduated from Sun Prairie High School last year and was searching for colleges before Friday evening. His death has already drawn comparisons to the shooting of Michael Brown, another unarmed black teen, in Ferguson, Mo., last year.
“Reports between the police and the youth’s friends differ, but it was clear he was unarmed,” said a statement from Young, Black and Gifted, a community group, on Friday. The organization also mentioned parallels between Brown’s and Robinson’s deaths.
President Obama said the Ferguson shooting was “not an isolated incident” on Friday. Ferguson Mayor James Knowles said Wednesday that Americans “must do better” to prevent tensions between minorities and law enforcement.
Wisconsin state law requires that the Department of Justice’s Division of Criminal Investigation independently review cases like Kenny’s.