Milwaukee’s Flynn Criticizes Probation For Armed Robbery


Antoine Drew Jr. wanted Jovanee Stewart’s gold chains in Milwaukee last year, so he pulled out a handgun, pointed it at the teenager and threatened to shoot him, says the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Drew took the 17-year-old’s jewelry, his cell phone, his shoes, and even his gold teeth covers and split the loot with an accomplice. Drew was put on probation because neither the judge nor the prosecutor appears to have considered the crime serious; they referred to it as “silly” and “stupid.”

Ten months later, police arrested Drew on another robbery. This time, prosecutors say, he killed someone. “It is just inconceivable to me that you can commit a robbery with a firearm and not do time,” said Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn. “These are the cases, more than any other, where judges should err on the side of protecting the community.” It is the latest case in an ongoing investigation by the newspaper on how criminals elude justice because of breaks from judges, communication breakdowns, miscalculations by law enforcement, and leniency from prosecutors in exchange for cooperation. Judge Thomas Donegan told the Journal Sentinel, “I was hoping that it was an isolated incident. As a judge you have to make those calls, and I hope that I call it right. It appears in this case that I didn’t get it right.”

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