Flynn: MPD sorting through facts of OWI arrest, will address public at right time

Annie Scholz

Flynn: MPD sorting through facts of OWI arrest, will address public at right time

By Annie Scholz. CREATED Apr 19, 2012 - UPDATED: Apr 19, 2012

You can watch Chief Ed Flynn's entire interview with reporters under Associated Videos

MILWAUKEE- Milwaukee's police chief speaks out for the first time about a controversial video showing one of his officers punching a suspect in the head during an arrest on N. Water St. and E. Juneau Ave. last week.

"What I ask the public not to do is leap to judgment," said Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn.  "We certainly recognize that this use of force has gotten an unprecedented amount of scrutiny from the public and we understand why."

The video is graphic -- an officer punching Jeff Strasser in the head after a drunk driving stop last Thursday night. The chief admits it doesn't look good.  "The use of force is seldom pretty, it's not a pleasant thing to use force," said Flynn.

But it is allowed by law, if used appropriately.  Whether or not it was in this case is still under investigation.

"We can slow the film down we can play it backwards we can look at it from four different directions, it's not always an easy thing simply from the film, and so we have to interview people and take testimony and follow through and that's what we're engaged in," asserted Flynn.

And if that follow through takes too long for some people, Flynn says, too bad.  "They want a half hour resolution that they might be used to on a television fiction show, but we have an obligation to the defendant and the charges, we have an obligation to the officer involved, we have an obligation to the community," argued Flynn.

Flynn did not talk about the officer involved in that incident, or what his status is with the department right now.  He simply said after they go through all the facts of this case, they'll talk about it when the time is right.