Officer Kenny’s family ‘dismayed’ by settlement, say vilifying Kenny doesn’t address issues

Cop who shot Tony Robinson off patrol this year
Officer Kenny’s family ‘dismayed’ by settlement, say vilifying Kenny doesn’t address issues
MPD officer Matt Kenny

The Madison police officer who shot and killed an unarmed man on the city’s near east side in 2015 will not be returning to street patrol duties this year, police Chief Mike Koval said Friday.

In a blog post, Koval said Officer Matt Kenny, who has been working with the department’s mounted patrol unit and training team, asked to continue working in those roles. Koval approved the request, saying that Kenny told him the assignment would be in the department’s and the city’s best interests.

Kenny’s sister, Amanda, released a statement Friday afternoon through the Wisconsin Professional Police Association . In the statement, Amanda Kenny said the family recognized the depth of the grief Robinson’s death caused his family, but added that the Kennys were “dismayed” by the settlement.

“There is a small, vocal group that wishes to vilify and denigrate my brother by labeling him a racist murderer,” Amanda Kenny said in the statement. “The further vilification of my brother does nothing to address…real issues, and nothing to make Madison a better place.”

Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne declined to charge Kenny in Robinson’s death last year, saying Kenny’s use of force was lawful. Ozanne said Robinson had a combination of Xanax, mushrooms and marijuana in his system at the time of the shooting. A police department internal review also cleared Kenny.

The announcement came one day after a civil lawsuit against the city’s insurance company on behalf of Robinson was settled for $3.35 million .

Attorneys for Robinson’s family said Thursday that the settlement was “vindication for the Robinson family.” Koval said the settlement will have a “chilling effect” on policing.