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Voir dire begins in federal jury trial of man allegedly shot by four Milwaukee officers

By: Steve Schuster, [email protected]//November 27, 2023//

Outside of a U.S. Federal Courtroom in Milwaukee. (Photography is not permitted inside the courtroom). Staff Photo by Steve Schuster

Voir dire begins in federal jury trial of man allegedly shot by four Milwaukee officers

By: Steve Schuster, [email protected]//November 27, 2023//

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Voir dire has started in a Federal jury trial in Milwaukee involving the man who was allegedly shot multiple times by four Milwaukee Police officers. The trial began Monday at 8:30 a.m. at the Federal Courthouse in Milwaukee.

Milwaukee Bar Association President Emil Ovbiagele and Attorney Samantha Baker at Ovbiagele’s firm, OVB Law & Consulting, represent Joseph Walker in 20-CV-487. Nathaniel Cade Jr. of Cade Law Group also is representing Walker.

The case was filed in United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin.

A panel of 34 potential jurors appeared Monday, initially taking questions from Magistrate Judge Nancy Joseph; eight jurors will be selected.

According to court documents obtained by the Wisconsin Law Journal, in the early morning hours of April 6, 2014, Joseph Walker was shot multiple times by four Milwaukee Police Department officers.

Walker sued the city of Milwaukee, along with MPD Sergeant Tanya Boll and MPD Officers Balbir Mahay, Jeremy Gonzalez, Daniel Clifford and Lisa Purcelli under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for allegedly violating his constitutional rights.

Walker alleges that Boll, Mahay, Clifford and Gonzalez used excessive force against him when shooting him (Count I) and that Gonzalez, Boll, Purcelli, Mahay and Clifford failed to intervene to stop the excessive force (Count II).

Walker also sued Milwaukee for its alleged failure to train its officers. (Count III and Docket # 62 at 18 n.3.)

The defendants moved for summary judgment in their favor on all three of Walker’s causes of action. However, the Court denied the defendants’ motion for summary judgment.
Defendants are represented by city of Milwaukee Attorneys Naomi Gehling, S. Todd Farris, Anthony Jackson, Yolanda Y McGowan, Clint B Muche, Robin Pederson and Katryna Rhodes.

According to the amended complaint obtained by the Wisconsin Law Journal, the case was filed as a federal civil rights action under the Fourth and Fifth Amendments.

This story has been updated.

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