By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — The chairwoman of a La Crosse County subcommittee looking to form a police oversight board seems to detest police.
That’s nothing new in the wake of a far left, cop-hating movement that exploded after the death of George Floyd, a black man who died at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer.
But the antipathy from Joella Striebel, a member of the La Crosse County Criminal Justice Management Council, is alarming to members of the law enforcement community and those who still believe in the importance of police
In one post on her Facebook page, Striebel shows off her new tattoo — a police riot helmet split in two with what appears to be a plant growing between the smashed remains.
“Strong communities prove police obsolete. Another world is possible,” Striebel’s post declares. And then she adds, “All cops are bound to a system of violence and oppression.”
Quite a sentiment from a member of a committee that is trying to create a police oversight board.
Sources tell Empower Wisconsin that Striebel and her defund-the-police allies are trying to push ahead as if the oversight board is a foregone conclusion. Several La Crosse County and city leaders and residents have raised concerns about the makeup of the board and the radical bent of potential members like Striebel.
The La Crosse Professional Police Supervisors and Non-Supervisors associations have publicly stated their opposition, saying the board would be redundant. La Crosse, like most cities, has long had a Police and Fire Commission.
“It is our opinion that those seeking to establish a ‘police oversight board’ are truly seeking the authority to swing a sledge; when the hammer they already have has proven reasonable,” the statement says.
It’s hard to disagree when one of the most anti-police members of the community is leading the effort to create a board that has power over law enforcement.