Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, Acquitted on All Counts

Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, Acquitted on All Counts

By Yehudit Garmaise

Kyle Rittenhouse, who was 17 when he when he fired an AR-15, semi-automatic rifle to kill two men and injure a third, after riots broke out in Kenosha, Wisc., on Aug. 25, 2020.

The riots had erupted in protest after Jacob Blake, a black man, was left paralyzed from the waist down after he was shot seven times in the back and the side by a Kenosha police officer, who said he was trying to detain Blake.

Later that night, Rittenhouse, who walking through the streets with the gun, was charged with wounding Gaige Grosskreutz, 27, and with homicide, attempted homicide, and reckless endangerment in the deaths of Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26.

The prosecution argued that Rittenhouse behaved criminally and recklessly by taking the law into his own hands in a night and and a summer of great chaos and confusion.

His defense attorneys, however, argued that Rittenhouse was acting in self-defense, which he testified to as well: claiming that he was just trying to protect local businesses.

Videos that were played during the trial, for instance, that showed Rosenbaum, who had just been discharged from a Milwaukee hospital for attempting suicide, had thrown a plastic bag full of his belongings at Rittenhouse.

Then, videos show that Rosenbaum briefly chased Rittenhouse, who then fired four fatal shots at him and just moments, later fatally shot Huber and wounded Grosskreutz.

“Kyle Rittenhouse shot Mr. Rosenbaum because he was attacking Kyle," lead defense attorney Mark Richards said in closing arguments. :Every person who was shot was attacking Kyle: one with a skateboard, one with his hands, one with his feet, one with his gun.” 

Although the defense attorney characterized Rosenberg as the aggressor, the prosecution said that Rittenhouse could not claim self-defense in a situation that he created by going outside and looking menacing with a large semi-automatic rifle.

As the jury deliberated, protestors anxiously made their presence known outside the courthouse.

To prepare for more violence that might erupt over the verdict, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers put National Guard troops in place in Kenosha.

After deliberating for close to three and a half days, the jury brought back its unanimous verdict to acquit Rittenhouse.

After the “not-guilty” verdict was read, Rittenhouse broke down in tears, but Justin Blake, the uncle of Jacob Blake, whose shooting triggered the chaos of the night, blamed the judge for not allowing the full range of videos that were taken during Aug. 25, 2020, to be shown in court.

“[The judge] was doing everything he could to allow this young man to leave the courtroom clear and free,” Justin Blake said. “It put blinds on the eyes of the jurors, and maybe because he did it, they didn’t see the evidence how they could have seen it.”

Conservative politicians, such as former Governor Scott Walker, who is a Republican, immediately praised the not-guilty verdict today, while those on the left expressed outrage at the ruling.

Although the idea was disproven in the trial, Mayor Bill de Blasio claimed that says that Rittenhouse brought a gun across state lines.

Like many on the left, the mayor immediately denounced the Rittenhouse’s acquittal and called it a miscarriage of justice.

Photo by: Flicker

Be in the know

receive BoroPark24’s news & updates on whatsapp

 Start Now

Weekly Weather: Weather outlook for the week of 11/21-26
  • Nov 20 2021
  • |
  • 9:00 PM

Culinary Corner: Harissa Roasted Gnocchi
  • Nov 21 2021
  • |
  • 12:30 PM