On July 19, at about 9:56 p.m., District 5 Lt. Heather Wurth responded to a report of a strong-arm robbery at N. Fratney and E. Center Street. The description given was a of black male, 20-25, 6’0 tall, white t-shirt, blue jean shorts, leather backpack. The caller also reported that the actor took a computer that was in a shoulder leather backpack.
As Lt. Wurth arrived at that location in a marked Milwaukee Police squad, dressed in full police uniform, she was flagged down by a victim of the robbery. The woman, who was walking northbound on N. Fratney towards E. Center Street, immediately pointed to a man also walking northbound on N. Fratney and stated, “that’s him.”
Lt. Wurth then looked directly at the man and she noted that he was wearing a white shirt, dark shorts, wearing a red backpack, and that he appeared to match the description given in the computer aided dispatch report.
The man continued to walk northbound on N. Fratney, but accelerated his pace, while Lt. Wurth turned the squad around and attempted to maintain visual contact with him. She then saw the same suspect turn eastbound on E. Center Street and cross over the street running northbound into the alley between N. Fratney and N. Bremen.
Lt. Wurth entered the alley with her squad and noted that she could not longer see the suspect. She continued to give a broadcast of a description and direction of travel to other responding squads. Lt. Wurth then drove to the 2700 block of N. Bremen and was advised by several citizens that the suspect had not come out onto N. Bremen. Lt. Wurth parked mid block and began checking the west yards in the 2700 block of N. Bremen.
She was met in the yards by Officers Chad Boyack, Nate Fager, Rick Ticconi and Sean Mahnke and the five continued to search for the suspect. While searching the yards, another officer reported via the radio that the suspect had possibly run west on E. Center Street. At that time, the officers began walking southbound on N. Fratney towards W. Center Street. While walking southbound, Lt. Wurth spotted the suspect she had originally observed standing in a gangway in the 700 block of E. Center Street. The suspect ran away with the officers in foot pursuit. The suspect discarded the red backpack on the sidewalk and continued to run.
Officers Boyack, Ticconi, Mahnke and Fager continued to run after the suspect and caught him in the 2600 block of N. Pierce Street. Lt. Wurth stayed with the recovered backpack, which was later positively identified as belonging to the victim of the robbery. Additional property from two victims was recovered. The suspect gave a full confession and was charged with robbery.
The victim in this offense took an active role to follow and maintain visual contact of the suspect. Great job by the officers and their supervisor in saturating the area. Due to their swift feet , the suspect was taken into custody without incident.