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Police had forced the teen's grieving mother, Patricia Larry, to sit in a squad car for more than an hour rather than let her hold her dying son or join him at the hospital. Officers also searched the mother's home for the allegedly stolen firearms, which were not found, and they arrested another one of her sons on a year-old truancy violation.
Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn defended his officers' actions, saying investigators only get one chance to collect evidence and interview witnesses at the scene. He said that means keeping witnesses apart to prevent them from talking, even family members who are mourning and want to be together.
In this case, Simmons' mother was a primary witness, Flynn said. "I wish it had been the mailman," the chief said. "But it wasn't. It was the mom."
The mother has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Spooner.
After Zimmerman's acquittal over the weekend in Florida, more than 100 people rallied Sunday night in Milwaukee. They marched, carried signs and spoke about injustice.
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