Members of the Revolutionary Black Panther Party are threatening to sue the Milwaukee Police Department and others over alleged violations of constitutional and civil rights.
The group said Wednesday it plans to file a $400 million lawsuit against police — including several specific officers — and the city alleging that its members and associates have been followed, harassed and threatened by police.
The group has not yet filed a lawsuit. At a news conference in Red Arrow Park, its leaders said they were consulting with attorneys about the case.
Alli Muhammad, chief general in command of the Revolutionary Black Panther Party, compared the actions of police to those of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s previous counterintelligence program, known as “COINTELPRO.”
“This is 2017,” he said. “We will not tolerate this type of COINTELPRO operation in 2017.”
Muhammad alleged a child was injured by an officer at an outdoor food pantry event in December.
Police have said officers responded to a call about someone carrying a gun and arrested a 21-year-old Milwaukee man with an open warrant who they say was unsafely handling a firearm. Police also said that several members of the group encircled police during the Dec. 28 incident and had to be physically moved back, adding at the time they had reached out to the family of the child who was reportedly injured but hadn’t heard back from them.
That incident happened shortly after members of the group, some of them armed, marched through the Sherman Park neighborhood to protest violence by law enforcement officers.
Source: Journal Sentinel | Mary Spicuzza