Appleton, WI -- Police shot and killed a man last Sunday at Jack's Apple Pub. Jimmie Sanders, of Milwaukee, was fatally wounded when police arrived after someone at the pub called 911.
Sanders and Henry Nellum got into a fight. Nellum pulled out the gun witnesses said he brought with him to the bar. Nellum told police he was attempting to hand his gun to a friend when the fight broke out. But witnesses told police that wasn't true.
Nellum allegedly put the gun to Sanders' neck just before Sanders wrestled the firearm away from him. During the scuffle, the gun went off. That's when police were called to the scene.
When police arrived, Sanders had just gotten the gun away from Nellum and, according to witnesses, this resolved the situation. However, seeing the gun in his hand, police opened fire on Sanders, killing him. Now, police have charged Nellum with attempted homicide but it wasn't Nellum who killed Sanders. It was the Appleton police.
The whole ordeal has left the Sanders family with more questions than answers, especially after the criminal complaint filed against Nellum made no mention of their loved one's death by cop.
A person purported to be Sanders' cousin described the incident in a Facebook message submitted by The Free Thought Project.
This past Sunday my cousin was shot by the police in Appleton Wisconsin. Jimmy was in the bar with a friend. A fight broke out. During the fight the unknown male pulled out a gun. During the scuffle my cousin was trying to get the gun out the man hands. The gun went off in the mist of trying to take it from the guy. The police were called. When the officers entered the bar they seen a black man with a weapon and fired.
This is video of the scuffle between the patrons.
Posted by Tory Lowe on Tuesday, May 23, 2017
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The family believes the police wasted no time in killing their loved one and said they can prove it. They claim to have witnesses who say absolutely no attempt was made to deescalate the situation. They also claim, as the criminal complaint alleges, it was Nellum's gun and did not belong to Sanders. The message continues;
Witness said the officer didnt even give my cousin a chance to surrender or drop the weapon. when the police came into the bar they seen a black man holding a gun and shot him. The man he was fighting was the one who pulled the gun out.
The message even claims the family can prove Nellum pulled the gun on Sanders who, understandably, disarmed his attacker. The cousin believes, according to the testimony the family received from witnesses, that no attempt was made to get Sanders to drop the gun.
There was even a video that the man pulled the gun out and Jimmy took it from him. Please share my cousins story I believe that the police saw a black man with a gun a opened fire not giving him a chance to surrender. He was not even given a command to comply.
The District Attorney handling Nellum's case, Carrie Schneider, described to reporters the charges against Nellum, who's also a convicted felon. Nellum was charged with First Degree Intentional Homicide, Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Recklessly Endangering Safety and several misdemeanor charges. Even though it wasn't Nellum who killed Sanders, he's been charged with his death by being ultimately responsible for the presence of a gun inside the pub.
According to Sanders' family advocate, Torrey Lowe, the wrong man was killed. "It was an unfortunate incident which took place and it looks like the man who was shot was not the one who brandished the gun," Lowe told reporters.
Schneider said "additional charges" could be filed in Sanders' shooting death, but did not indicate whether or not she was referencing the unnamed Appleton police officer who killed Sanders. Currently, Green Bay police are investigating the officer-involved shooting which took Sanders' life.
As The Free Thought Project has advocated on numerous occasions, police officers need to be trained and in some cases retrained in deescalation methods. The Salt Lake City Utah Police Department has retrained all of its officers to deescalate conflicts such as the one which took Sanders' life. Since the 2015 implementation, the department has not had one officer-involved shooting which took the life of a citizen.
As of this Sunday, Jimmy Sanders' was the 482nd person killed by police so far in 2017. What's more, his death will more likely than not be 'officially' counted by police as they are charging another person for it.