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New report shows Milwaukee cops fire guns fewer times in 2012


MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - It’s been said that most police officers never fire their guns on duty during their entire careers – and new figures in Milwaukee seem to bear that out.

The Fire and Police Commission said officers intentionally fired their weapons at suspects only 8 times last year in Wisconsin’s largest city. And that’s down from 15 the year before.

Commission director Michael Tobin said officer-involved shootings are extremely rare, considering that Milwaukee Police were called to a quarter-million incidents last year.

Five of the eight shootings in 2012 were ruled to be justified. Three are still being investigated, including the shooting death of an armed robbery suspect last November.

Officials said the alleged robber reached into his pocket and then pointed toward an officer that was chasing him. The officer fired 8 shots in response.

Assistant Police Chief James Harpole said Milwaukee officers have reduced their use of force after new training procedures were adopted in 2011.

The new report also said there was only one non-intentional gun discharge, down from 7 the year before. And Milwaukee officers killed 28 unruly dogs last year, down by almost 25 percent.