Brown Deer PD chief responds about Haughton domestic violence run-ins
BROWN DEER - Brown Deer's police chief is answering his critics who say his department should have done more to stop the Brookfield salon shooter during prior domestic violence incidents.
He said that his officers were right to leave the home of Radcliffe and Zina Haughton in 2011 after being called out for a domestic violence issue.
"It is unhelpful when the media picks and chooses how they want to report something," said Brown Deer Police Chief Steven Rinzel.
"We feel terrible about all these things. We wish that things didn't work out that way."
He told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Jodi Becker that his officers are good, hard working people who've taken a bad rap for how they handled the prior run-in with the salon shooter, Radcliffe, and his wife Zina.
Rinzel says officers were talking to Zina in 2011 when one officer thought they saw the man come to a window with a weapon. Another officer thought it was a broom.
The officers drew weapons and set up a perimeter.
"That's normal for when you're going to come on, and somebody says, 'Gun!' and you have your officers drop back," explained Rinzel.
When asked if that means a standoff, he said, "At one point in time, they probably thought it was, too, but they later on holstered their weapons and backed away."
Zina told the officers they could not go inside, and there was no danger.
"It's a terrible tragedy, and somebody wants to blame somebody for it. I recognize that. Unfortunately, I don't think that's the case in this situation."
Rinzel says his officers may have been criticized that day if they had busted down the door to talk with the man.