More Information on Phone Calls for Arrestees from Suburban Departments and Milwaukee Police --- Silence from Sheriff
All of the Northshore Police Departments have responded to my inquiry about whether they allow arrestees to make phone calls when they are arrested.
Every single one of the departments, in general, allow the arrestees to make calls. Procedures vary a little, but basically the arrestees are allowed to use their cell phones, or the police allow them to use the police phones, to make contact with someone who can bail them out.
Of course, with all the departments, if the arrestee is combative or making a disturbance, safety concerns will take precedence.
The following response from Chief Resnick, Bayside PD, is pretty representative of the suburban departments policies.
"David, we do allow telephone calls in almost all instances before transport to other facilities. We find it extremely beneficial if family and friends know the whereabouts of their loved ones. This facilitates appropriate representation, bail, etc.
Generally the only arrestees not allowed access to a phone are those that have been uncooperative and/or pose some type of security threat.
If you need any further information please let me know.
Chief Bruce Resnick
Bayside Police Department
9075 N. Regent Road
Bayside, WI 53217-1800
I have had the opportunity to talk and correspond with Anne E Schwartz, the public relations representative for the Milwaukee Police Department. Ms Schwartz's initial research is as follows, please note that I have responded to her with the particular situation that started this series of postings, and she will be getting back with more information:
"Hello, Dave -
We do not allow arrestees to make phone calls. However, your example of the person who lost their job has us asking a number of questions, namely, why was he held for 3 days in CJF on municipal citations? He would not be held for three days because of municipal warrants - there has to be more to that story. If you supply us his name and date of birth, I'd be happy to look into what occurred in his specific circumstance so you can accurately inform your readers.
Anne E. Schwartz
Office of Media & Communications
Milwaukee Police Department
749 W. State Street
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53233
Office Phone: (414) 935-7209"
There has been no response from Mayor Barrett's office.
I received the following response from the County Exec Office:
"Mr. Tatarowicz -
I am responding to your email sent to the yesterday regarding the telephone policy for inmates at the jail. You raise some good questions on the procedures in place. Unfortunately, our office is not involved in the policies set by the Sheriff for running the jail. Your email was also directed to the office of the Sheriff, and they should have the information you are seeking.
Thank you for your interest and for contacting our office,
Director of Communications
Office of the Milwaukee County Executive
- cell "
I received the following "auto" response from Sheriff Clarke's office
"Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. thanks you for contacting the
Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office. Our headquarters are located at 821 W.
State Street, Room 107, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53233. Our main
administrative offices are open from Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m.
to 4:00 p.m.
Your e-mail is important to us. This message is an automated response to
let you know that your message was received and will be forwarded to the
appropriate person(s) or division(s) for a response.
If your situation is an emergency, you should dial 9-1-1.
Thank you again for giving us the privilege of being of service to you.
The Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office...Expect the Best!! "
In summation at this point:
1) Suburban departments save money and resources by allowing phone calls
2) Milwaukee PD does not allow them at this time, but hopefully they will re-examine that policy, in light of what other departments do, and the money they save.
3) Milwaukee County as a whole is facing a HUGE budget shortfall --- as is the Sheriff's Department in particular, but the County Exec is passing on this issue.
4) Sheriff Clarke whose budget is most affected by keeping people in jail when they could often bail out with a simple phone call, has yet to respond.
WHAT DO YOU THINK ? YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOME !