RACINE — The Racine Police Department has handed over its investigation of the officer-involved shooting of 18-year-old Ty’ Rese West to the Racine County District Attorney’s Office, District Attorney Tricia Hanson confirmed Tuesday.
Hanson said that a preliminary set of investigative reports were delivered to the District Attorney’s Office on Friday, Aug. 2.
She said some items are still missing from the file and that information will have to be received before a final decision can be made. Hanson could not elaborate on what the missing items were.
After Hanson has all the necessary documents, she will determine whether Mount Pleasant Police Sgt. Eric Giese will be charged.
The delivery of the reports came one day shy of seven weeks after West was fatally shot while riding his bike in the 2500 block of Racine Street (Highway 32) at about 1:30 a.m. on June 15.
According to the National Police Foundation, “an independent, non-partisan and non-membership organization dedicated to policing through innovation and science,” the guideline completion date for lead agencies investigating officer-involved shootings is typically 30 days.
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However, Howell said Tuesday, "Based on the known length of time toxicology reports take to secure (6 to 8 weeks), the reported 30 day timeline was not attainable in this case. In order to promote organizational transparency and to keep the public informed, the investigative packet was forwarded to the DA’s Office (minus the crime lab reports which have yet to be completed).”
Mount Pleasant Police Chief Matt Soens issued a news release that afternoon stating that the officer — identified by the state Department of Justice on June 23 as Giese — was forced to discharge a service weapon at West, whom Racine Police said was being “uncooperative.”
Police said “less lethal” attempts were used, but fatal force was ultimately used. Racine Police have said that West was armed and that a gun was recovered at the scene.
Since West’s death, the West family has called for audio and visual proof of the narrative provided by police. They do not believe that West was armed.
Local authorities have been largely silent on the West matter, releasing very little information or details to the public since the incident.