I’d love to hear Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s explanation for the 24-minute gap between reports of smoke billowing from the Milwaukee County Courthouse and his 911 center calling for fire fighters, but apparently Sheriff Clarke isn’t responding to requests for an explanation.
Smoke alarms sounded at the Milwaukee County Courthouse starting shortly after noon July 6, as Milwaukee County sheriff’s officers observed smoke billowing from the building, according to newly released reports.
Unnamed sheriff’s staffers manning the downtown jail’s “master control” center were “notified to contact the Milwaukee Fire Department,” according to the report by Lt. Casey Staat.
What’s less clear from the official account released through an open records request was what accounted for a 24-minute delay in making a 911 call to alert the Fire Department.
Staat’s report says he was notified by a correctional officer about 12:06 p.m. July 6 that she spotted smoke coming from the courthouse. Shortly after that, the power went out, the report says.
Staat’s report doesn’t say when the 911 call was placed, though Fire Department records say the call came at 12:30 p.m. A sheriff’s “log activity system” record puts the time of the call at 12:29 p.m.
I look forward to Sheriff Clarke’s explanation for the nearly half-hour delay before his agency contacted the appropriate first responders to deal with the Courthouse fire.