La Crosse County’s top prosecutor expresses his support for county watchdog groups that look into police practices.
District Attorney Tim Gruenke told the county study committee on policing Tuesday that it’s good to have a panel which can investigate complaints from the public.
The idea of a policing study was promoted in the last couple of years, after George Floyd was killed by then-Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who knelt on his neck for over 9 minutes.
Gruenke said he doesn’t hear many negative comments about police in this area, but he has heard complaints that law enforcement can be “rude” and “mean” and engage in profiling when investigating crimes.
Gruenke told the committee that officers may feel they’re following the rules, and might be unaware that citizens feel unhappy or threatened after contact with police.
He cited one recent incident where area officers searched a home for evidence in a crime investigation, and a woman living there wrote a letter saying she and her children were traumatized and afraid after police with guns came to the house.