Between June 17, 2020 and August 16, 2020, there were at least 136 reports of shots fired in the City of Kenosha. That averages out to more than two per day. Homicides are up in 2021. This year to date, there are more than double the amount over the last 12 years. This could increase as there are still 77 days in this year. In Kenosha, the buck stops with Mayor John Antaramian (D). We emailed him to see if he had a plan to combat the large jump in homicides and shootings. His executive assistant confirmed he received the email but didn’t want to comment. Antaramian has been in bad health lately. He suffered a heart attack in 2019, and before that found himself losing consciousness at his desk in his city hall office, waking up confused, per our sources. During the riots of 2020, Antaramian was noticeably missing from the public. He didn’t declare a curfew lawfully, which resulted in the hard work of the police being erased because the tickets issued for curfew were dismissed. Antaramian, a democrat, refused to ask for help from the Federal Government because he was too proud. He reportedly spent most of his time in Lake Geneva for the violence and arsons that destroyed much of uptown and downtown. The fact that Antaramian doesn’t have a plan to combat this violence should be concerning.
We also emailed each and every Alderman. All 17 of them. Not one of them wished to share a plan. We assume that neither the mayor, nor the council have a plan. Low-income housing seems to be a priority. Spending $8M on a parking garage and $400M on “downtown revitalization” is more important than many hundreds of daily shootings and a record number of homicides. The City this year tore down part of Fire Station #4. This building was just built in the last few years. Only the government would tear down a brand new building.
Previous police Chiefs have been saying for at least two decades that the expanding City is in dire need of more officers. Still this doesn’t seem to be a priority.
We spoke with the Kenosha Police’s Public Information Officer, Lt. Joe Nosalik. We asked him about the large number of shootings and he shared a message of optimism.
“Kenosha’s homicide rate for 2021 is concerning; given our numbers from previous years,” said Nosalik. “One murder is too many. (We) strive to implement past practice that proved to work well. We are also thinking outside the box to develop new strategy that mitigate the potential for homicide and crime overall.” Nosalik then gave us a little more context on the murders for this year. “To date, 50% of our murders have been directly related to domestic violence.” How can Kenosha residents help with the spike? Nosalik says that “(KPD) is dependent on our community to provide information to solve crime. Of equal importance is our community providing information that can prevent crime.” For those in the community that are afraid to give information to police regarding serious crimes, they can always call crime-stoppers and remain anonymous 262-656-7333. It is promising that Kenosha Police Administration is taking action to engage the community and work with us to tackle this issue.
As for the Mayor, most of us are happy that he will not be seeking another term. While we had our homes, businesses and property burned, he hid like a coward and didn’t come through when we needed him the most. He knows he would never be re-elected.