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Law Enforcer’s Comments Raise Concerns Among Minorities

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Kathryn Bracho, WBAY-TV (Green Bay), Nov. 2

Controversial comments about race are forcing Brown County law enforcement officials to respond and explain.

At a meeting Monday, Public Safety Committee members asked Lieutenant Tom Molitor, a member of the Brown County Drug Task Force, how drugs usually get to our area.

He answered, “Bulk cocaine or bulk marijuana is going to have, generally speaking, going to have a connection to Mexican criminal organization, okay? If we’re talking about large quantities of crack, generally it is an African-American from Chicago or Milwaukee area.”

Chief Deputy John Gossage says Lieutenant Molitor meant to talk about the routes drugs take to our area, not about the people who sell them. “South America, up into Mexico, being channeled up through highways, through airplanes, through boats, etc., eventually making its way up through Chicago,” Gossage expounded.

Police say during that meeting, Lieutenant Molitor said he does not think all Mexicans are drug dealers, and said diversity is a good thing.

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Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt apologized that such comments made at the meeting. He said people have to be more careful when making generalizations about others.

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But some members of local minority communities are also questioning remarks Brown County Supervisor Guy Zima then made in reply. Discussing the racial makeup of people police say bring drugs to the Green Bay area, Zima said, “This information needs to be broken out and shown to the public because all we’re getting out of the local newspaper, is, you know, the bright side of diversity, not showing the negative side.”

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Original article

(Posted on November 3, 2005)

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