Man charged in death of 17-year-old robbery partner
By Bruce Vielmetti
of the Journal Sentinel
Posted: Aug. 17, 2009
A 19-year-old Milwaukee man has been charged in the death of his 17-year-old partner in an armed robbery. Police say his partner was fatally shot by one of the pair's intended victims last week.
Damien A. Cole faces charges of felony murder, as well as being party to the crimes of armed robbery and attempted armed robbery. If convicted of felony murder, he faces up to 55 years in prison.
According to the criminal complaint, a 23-year-old man had met his girlfriend at a bus stop to walk her home after she finished her job early Thursday at a Water St. tavern. As they walked up onto her porch in the 2600 block of N. Palmer St. about 2:45 a.m., Cole and a man identified in the complaint as Kevin Ollie appeared and demanded money.
As the woman searched her purse in a panic, her boyfriend took a .25-caliber pistol from his back pocket and began shooting at the suspects, who then ran off. Ollie died a short distance away. Cole was stopped just moments later by police officers who were responding to the shooting and an earlier armed robbery that the complaint also attributes to Cole and Ollie.
In that crime, the pair robbed four men at 2:20 a.m. as they left the Stone Fly Brewing Co. at E. Center and N. Fratney streets, according to the complaint. They fled in Cole's father's white Dodge Intrepid, which was later found parked near the house where the fatal shooting occurred.
Police stopped Cole as he was walking near N. 2nd and W. Center streets because he matched the descriptions given by the earlier robbery victims. He was sweaty, dirty and had been shot in the foot. Last week, police said it was unclear whether Cole's injury was from the 23-year-old man or from Ollie. According to the complaint, Ollie carried the gun for the evening's robberies, and Cole was not armed.
There's a discrepancy over Ollie's name. Police said he goes by the names Kevin and Devin, and court records about Ollie contain both names. A person identifying herself as an aunt called a reporter and said Devin Ollie was involved in the robbery. Kevin Ollie is his brother, and Devin might have used his brother's name in encounters with law enforcement, the aunt said.
The 23-year-old man who shot at Cole and Ollie acted lawfully in self-defense and the defense of his girlfriend and won't face any criminal charge in the matter, according to Chief Deputy District Attorney Kent Lovern.
Sharif Durhams of the Journal Sentinel staff contributed to this report.
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