MADISON (WKOW) – Tony Robinson's family addressed the media Monday afternoon in front of the home where the 19-year old was shot and killed Friday by a Madison Police Officer.
“This is something we're going to be dealing with for the rest of our lives,” said Turin Carter, Robinson's uncle.
Robinson's death has sparked protests in Madison, with some feeling it reflects a broader problem of young, black men being targeted by the criminal justice system.
“I encourage everybody to show support regardless of race,” Carter said, “because this is truly a universal issue.”
Carter was joined at Monday's news conference by Robinson's mother, Andrea Irwin, and father, Tony Robinson. Both declined to address the media at this time.
Robinson was shot and killed by Madison Police Officer Matt Kenny. Madison Police Chief Mike Koval said Kenny entered a home, where Robinson was inside, after reports that the teen had been involved in a physical altercation with someone and was running in and out of traffic.
Koval has said Robinson was unarmed.
Carter said he is confident the Wisconsin Department of Justice, which is conducting an independent investigation into the shooting in accordance with a recently passed state law, will provide clarity as to what transpired the night of March 6.
“We trust them to handle this with integrity and to treat this as it comes,” Carter said. “We don't want our biases involved, or anybody else's biases involved. We want (state investigators) to act strictly as fact finders.”
Carter also said, while the family supports peaceful protests over Robinson's death, it does not support tension between protesters and police officers.
“We are not proponents of anti-police,” Carter said. “In regards to not trusting police, we don't condone that, because we understand this was an individual act.”
But Carter also said his family has taken issue with some of its interactions with DOJ officials so far. He said his sister, Robinson's mother, had not yet been allowed to see her son's body as of Monday afternoon.
“Obviously none of us have experienced loss on this level,” Carter said of his family. “So there's no real blueprint on how to cope.”
“I haven't really dealt with the reality of the situation. That's something I'm prepared to do later when there's not as much business to handle,” Carter said.
Carter said funeral arrangements for Robinson are being made.