We understand and acknowledge that a police officer fatally shooting an unarmed person, even a robbery suspect, is difficult to comprehend and accept. The shooting death of Paul Heenan is a terrible tragedy.
But after examining everything we know about the events of November 9th, our editorial board believes that the investigators involved, especially Madison Police Chief Noble Wray, and Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne, have made the proper rulings. Very simply, we trust both men and do not believe they would cover up wrong doing in a case like this. We also know that trust is not shared by some in the community. Again, we understand. And we believe the Madison Police department takes that seriously and understand some trust needs to be rebuilt.
We also think it’s worth having a community conversation about how these cases are investigated. There are alternative models in some communities that deserve to be looked at. The Madison-Dane County model may be the best. But let’s talk about it. In the name of trust.