“Don’t say no more. Just show the videos!”
Attorney Ben Crump’s demand was resoundingly echoed by the crowd gathered at the Justice for Joel Acevedo rally at the Milwaukee County Courthouse on July 13, 2020.
The videos are those taken by the body-cams of two police officers who responded to a 911 call at the home of police officer Michael Mattioli in April 2020. Joel Acevedo was on the floor dead, after Mattioli had him in a deadly chokehold for more than ten minutes.
Joel is gone, but Mattioli remains on the Milwaukee Police Department payroll, even though he is awaiting trial on a charge of reckless homicide.
But police have yet to release to the public the videos and the tape of 911 call.
When a man of color does something wrong, they release the video right away and show it over and over, Crump told the crowd.
But only the Acevedo family has been allowed to see the tape of the crime scene at Mattolli’s house. And they report that the chokehold went on for more than ten minutes.
That’s longer than the time George Floyd was choked, Crump said. The nationally known attorney is representing the Floyd family of Minneapolis and now the Acevedo family of Milwaukee, along with the families of other victims of police violence nationwide.
“What are they hiding?” by not releasing the tape, asked Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Executive Director of Voces de la Frontera, another speaker at the rally.
Neumann-Ortiz demanded not only the release of the videos and the 911 call, but also the firing of Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales.
Morales has refused to release the video and tape; has refused to fire Mattioli; and has consistently refused for many months to engage in any dialogue on any subject with community groups, Neumann-Ortiz said.
Attorney B’Ivory LaMarr, who also represents the Acevedo family, disclosed that the family has filed a lawsuit against the City of Milwaukee, demanding the release of the tapes.
“What don’t they want you to see?” he asked.
LaMarr noted “the countless organizations out here today” to take part in the rally and the community support for the Acevedo family.
Voces de la Frontera was a co-sponsor of the rally.
After the courthouse rally, a march and car caravan proceeded to the site of a mural for Joel Acevedo (see picture), on the corner of S. 6th St. and W. Greenfield Ave.