Officers justified in shooting death of man on Rockefeller Lane

Internal affairs investigation exonerates 3 Madison policemen
Officers justified in shooting death of man on Rockefeller Lane
Officers Ryan Finnegan, Ryan Orvis and ScottTempleton

The three officers who shot and killed a man on the east side last month were justified in their actions, a police internal affairs review said.

The Professional Standards and Internal Affairs division of the Madison Police Department said in a review summary Thursday morning that officers Ryan Orvis, Ryan Finnegan and Scott Templeton, who fired their guns in a standoff with a man on Rockefeller Lane, were following department policies.

Police were at Brent Brozek’s home on the 900 block of Rockefeller Lane on May 17 to serve an eviction notice, which turned into a daylong standoff.

A separate investigation by Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne released earlier on June 4 also said the three policemen were not criminally liable in the incident.

Police video offers a glimpse of what happened just before the officers opened fire on Brozek.

“Anytime you have video, it just adds one more piece of evidence to a case,” said Captain Mary Schauf of the Madison Police East District. “So I think video is a hugely valuable tool for us. It provides a lot of information and it can corroborate the different pieces we have from different parts of the investigation.”

Brozek, 43, was killed at about 9 p.m. May 17, after he exited the home carrying a sword, hatchet and knife, the district attorney’s report said. Brozek had refused to comply with officers since police had arrived at about 11 a.m. and the report said he had charged toward officers with the sword.

Police department spokesman Joel DeSpain had said officers first fired non-lethal bean bag rounds to attempt to stop Brozek, then used deadly force when he charged at them a second time.

Orvis, Finnegan and Templeton fired their weapons and Brozek was killed at the scene.

The department’s Internal Affairs summary said the officers were justified in using non-deadly force and ultimately, deadly force, citing Madison policies.

In the summary signed by Chief Noble Wray and Lt. Dan Olivas, the department said the three officers would remain on leave but will return to regular duties when they’re ready.