By Cara L. Dempski
GLENWOOD CITY — Shortly after being interviewed by the local police department, a Glenwood City woman posted signs including profanity and stating “Die Cops” in the front windows of her Elm Street home.
Mami Amirah stated she was approached by Glenwood City Police Chief Robert Darwin on August 17 as she and several family members were looking at a home for sale on Third Street in Glenwood City.
She was walking with her boyfriend, brother and daughter looking at homes for sale in the community when she mentioned the house to them. They all decided to walk over to look at it.
Amirah stated she called the number for the realtor and was asking questions regarding the size of the home to see if it fit her family’s needs.
“I remembered that when I first moved to Glenwood City, I saw the house up on the hill by the cemetery that was for sale and it looked like it was a fairly large house,” Amirah said.
Darwin said he was on patrol in the mid-afternoon when he stopped to speak with Amirah.
“I saw her standing in the driveway on her phone and, because there have been damage reports at that address in the past few months, decided to do a field interview,” Darwin said of the stop. “The fact that I knew she did not live in the home and was standing on the property got my attention.”
Earlier this summer, Glenwood City police took a report of a broken front window at the 225 Third Street home that Amirah was stopped in front of. Chief Darwin said that the homeowner could not say how it had been broken, but speculated at the time that it could have happened when a rock was thrown by a lawnmower.
Amirah stated that she was approached by Chief Darwin after taking approximately two steps into the driveway of the home to see if she could get a better view of the backyard. She informed the realtor she was speaking with that an officer was there.
“He (the realtor) asked if it was the chief, and I said yes after looking at his name,” Amirah said of the call. The realtor asked if he could speak with Darwin, and Amirah relayed this to the chief. Darwin stated he did not wish to speak with the realtor and Amirah relay that to the realtor before disconnecting the call.
Amirah said she informed Chief Darwin that she was looking at the home and contacting the realtor when he approached her.
Darwin said that as he was speaking with Amirah, one of the men with her approached the duo. Amirah confirmed that this was her brother and he came over from across the street to ask if she was okay.
At this point, a video recording via cell phone was started. In the first of two videos of the incident that were posted to social media, Chief Darwin and Ms. Amirah’s brother can be seen speaking to one another with Chief Darwin asking repeatedly for the man to identify himself. The man stated that he was under no obligation to provide identification and he was just checking to see if his sister was in need of assistance.
Several seconds before the end of the first video, Darwin called for assistance on his radio. He later said at that point that he felt he would need additional people on hand to assist him in speaking with Amirah and her brother.
“It was a relatively minor incident, but the male interjected in the conversation and was being uncooperative,” Darwin said of the call for assistance. “He failed to identify himself.”
When the second video on social media begins, there are a further three cruisers at the scene and a fourth due to arrive.
The person recording the video is heard saying there is no reason for four units, let alone a fifth. Units from the St. Croix County Sheriff’s Department, Wisconsin State Patrol and Boyceville Police Department responded to assist the Glenwood City police chief.
After approximately two minutes, Darwin approached Amirah and asked her to please contact the realtor to look at the inside of the home and then wait off the property until the realtor arrived. Amirah stated that’s who she was on the phone with when she was initially approached. The conversation ended with Chief Darwin informing Ms. Amirah that if there was a complaint or she was spotted on the property again, she would be penalized for trespassing.
During the second video, Ms. Amirah also alleged that a police cruiser had been driving very slowly past the home she rents, and at times has parked either directly across the street or closer to the end of the block for up to two hours at a time.
Chief Darwin denied the allegations after asking what the police cruiser looked like and being told it was just like the SUV he was driving on August 17. The chief stated he is the only one who drives that cruiser, and the full-time and part-time officers share use of the city’s Crown Victoria cruiser.
“I absolutely loved Glenwood City, I met some amazing people and there’s a cool thrift store and a place to get cheap drinks and fries,” Amirah said of moving to he town five months ago. “I came here to get away from the crazy city life, but this terrible and traumatic experience has pushed me to look into going back to the Cities.”
Chief Darwin said of the incident that he continued on his patrol of the community and not quite an hour had passed when he saw the signs posted in Ms. Amirah’s windows.
“So far we haven’t had any complaints from the neighbors,” Darwin said of the signs. “What I saw, they (Amirah and her family) were trespassing, and that’s why I stopped.”
The owner of the home rented by Amirah has not received any complaints regarding the signs.