WEST ALLIS - We're slowly starting to piece together what happened in West Allis when a squad car and a private car collided and an 81-year-old man lost his life. Late Thursday, police released the man's name. He's Elroy Brzycki from West Allis.
One day later, the rain is falling, but muddy tracks from the fatal accident haven't disappeared. Neither have some haunting memories. Neighbors swear they heard sirens first, before the crash. That would seem to say the officer was headed down Lincoln with his siren blaring.
The squad and private vehicle t-boned at 80th and Lincoln, seven blocks from a separate accident scene that the officer was responding to. A tenant in this building thinks the elderly driver may not have been buckled up. He saw his body leaning out the passenger side window. West Allis deputy police chief Bob Fletcher has called on Wisconsin State Patrol to handle the investigation.
"This way it takes away any sort of impropriety or anything like that favoritism to one party or the other," said West Allis Deputy Chief Bob Fletcher.
On the police radio Wednesday evening, it was a chilling call. Hearing that an officer was involved in a serious crash, nearly a dozen squad cars rushed to the scene.
"Well it certainly, you know, it's somebody that you work with and it's like anybody else who would work with a co-worker, our officers are obviously gonna be concerned about that," said Deputy chief Fletcher.
Witnesses had seen the officer moving his legs after the crash. Deputy Chief Fletcher says he was treated at a local hospital for relatively minor injuries and released, and that tonight, he is recovering at home.
The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner did an autopsy on the 81-year-old man Thursday. The results have not yet been released.