Erik Olep of Maquoketa is taking matters into his own hands on an issue he believes needs more attention.
Drew Edwards died last year after Maquoketa police used a stun gun on him twice. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation’s original report justified the actions by the three officers involved. The Edwards family has since filed a wrongful death lawsuit (you can find both the lawsuit and the original report at the end of the article).
Olep wants to see the police involved re-investigated, in part because Branden Zeimet and Steve Schroder are two of the officers involved in the incident and are now both running for county sheriff.
“The local police and local government is trying to brush it under the rug,” says Olep. “They don’t want attention brought to it.”
Olep has decided to shed light on the issue by protesting by himself from dawn to dusk on a busy Maquoketa street corner. Some agree with Olep’s push to shed light on this issue, while others do not.
“I’ve been flipped off,” says Olep. “That’s their opinion. I’ve been heckled and flipped off and sworn at. I don’t really care if they spit on me. I’m here.”
Olep wants people to watch the body-cam footage themselves and come to their own conclusions.
Local 4 News reached out to Maquoketa police for comment but have not heard back.