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Police chief: Death strained Madison ties
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MADISON (AP) - The death of an unarmed 19-year-old man who was shot by a Madison police officer has strained relations between police and the community, the city's police chief acknowledged in an interview broadcast Sunday.

But Police Chief Mike Koval said he doesn't see the death of Tony Robinson as a defining moment for his department.

In an interview broadcast on "UpFront with Mike Gousha," a statewide television news magazine, Koval said Madison is "exhausted on many levels" after Officer Matt Kenny, who is white, fatally shot Robinson, who was biracial, on March 6.

Police say Robinson, also known as Terrell, was shot after a confrontation in which he assaulted Kenny. A preliminary autopsy showed Robinson was shot in his head, torso and right arm. The Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating.

In the interview, Koval said he knows police have "a long way to go" in rebuilding trust with the community after the shooting, The Capital Times reported. He also expressed concern about the relationship between Madison police and the community.

"I think that the relationships that we have are obviously very strained relative to what's happened a week ago," Koval said. "But I also think that those who have been in Madison, those who know the Madison Police Department, will not allow the tragic death of Tony Robinson to define the legacy of many, many, many good works that we do daily with selfless service, or at least that's my hope."

Koval said he was grateful to Robinson's family for urging those who have participated in protests after the shooting to exercise responsibility and restraint. He said that allowed Madison to "move forward in a way that is far different than what we've seen in a lot of markets."

Robinson's death was the latest in a string of shootings by police nationwide that heightened racial tensions. Protests in Ferguson, Missouri, turned violent after an unarmed black 18-year-old was fatally shot there last August.

Madison police tried initially to strike a more conciliatory tone than their counterparts in Ferguson had done. Koval rushed to the home of Robinson's family on the night of the killing and prayed with his grandmother in the driveway. In a blog post Monday, Koval apologized and wrote that he hoped Robinson's family and friends could find forgiveness.

At least 1,000 people turned out Saturday for Robinson's funeral at a Wisconsin high school field house.