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Kenosha Fire and Police Commission to review Taser incident

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KENOSHA, WI (WTAQ) - The Kenosha Fire and Police Commission plans to investigate an incident in July, in which an officer fired a Taser stun gun at a man who was apparently about to get into a fist fight with another man.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel said it found a discrepancy between a written police report on the incident, and a squad car video.

According to the paper, Kenosha officer Brian Ruha wrote that he saw two men actively fighting in a street when the squad car approached. But video from the vehicle showed that both men were standing, and neither had his fists raised. And officer Ruha fired the Taser at Keenan Smith within 15 seconds after the officer got out of his car.

Commission president Ronald Frederick said the conflicting accounts don’t make sense, and he wants his panel to get to the bottom of it.

Defense lawyer Denise Hertz-McGrath said Smith could have hit his head on the pavement after being Tasered so quickly. The other suspect, Tamirius Gaston, fell to the ground voluntarily when ordered to do so.

Smith pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of obstructing an officer, and was fined over $750.

Gaston was charged with disorderly conduct, but the count was dropped and he received a citation instead. The defense lawyer said the two men were long-time friends, and Gaston didn’t want to press charges.

Kenosha police officials have not commented. The commission plans to review the matter next Tuesday.

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