December 7, 2021

Maybach Media

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Jury Found Kyle Rittenhouse Not Guilty On All Counts Despite Killing Two Innocent People At Black Lives Matter Protest In Kenosha

On a street in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Kyle Rittenhouse is armed with an assault weapon, which he has strapped to his chest.

In an interview with a journalist, the youngster explains that his duty is to “guard this business,” referring to a car dealership behind him.

“And it’s part of my duty to provide a hand. If there’s someone in trouble, I’m going to put myself in harm’s path.”

“It’s for this reason why I have my firearm.”

The 17-year-old is not a soldier or a police officer, according to the authorities. He works as a lifeguard at a swimming pool in the area.

Despite this, he is only a few minutes away from using the pistol to murder two individuals and badly hurt a third in cold blood.

Mr. Rittenhouse has taken to the streets of Kenosha on the third night of Black Lives Matter demonstrations, which were sparked by a police officer shooting and gravely wounding a black man named Jacob Blake in the city’s downtown area.

Mr Rittenhouse claims he is on the streets to defend property, put out fires, and provide medical assistance to anyone injured during the protests.

However, by being on the streets, he is in violation of a curfew order, as are dozens of other people on both sides of a bitter political divide.

Some people in the United States believe he is a reckless vigilante affiliated with racist organisations who is searching for a battle in a community rife with social and racial strife.

Others, on the other hand, see him as a law-abiding citizen who has arrived to safeguard businesses from demonstrators.

The rift that exists between Americans on this topic has resonated across the world’s media — but the jury that just acquitted him was only required to answer one question.

Was he justified in firing three shots from his gun at three different people?

The summer of 2020 in the United States was marked by prolonged demonstrations over the killings of African-Americans at the hands of police officers.

While the shooting death of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin was the focal point, it wasn’t the only incident that aroused outrage over perceived racial injustice in the United States.

Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and Kenosha’s Jacob Blake were among the names that protestors sang throughout the demonstration.

The majority of Black Lives Matter demonstrations in the United States were nonviolent, according to one widely regarded research; nonetheless, protestors’ fury and the perceived heavy-handedness of police crowd control led to eruptions of damage and violence on occasion.

In the aftermath of Mr Blake’s shooting, rioters set fire to vehicles and buildings in Kenosha, and far-right organisations issued a call for armed individuals to violate the curfew and go to the streets.

“Are there any patriots who are prepared to take up guns and protect our city from the nasty thugs tonight?” One self-described militia member expressed himself in writing.

On the night of August 25, 2020, Mr. Rittenhouse, who had previously expressed support for right-wing causes as well as police and the Black Lives Matter counter-campaign “Blue Lives Matter,” made the decision to drive 30 minutes from his home in the state of Illinois to go out in the city of Kenosha on the night of August 25, 2020.

The 17-year-old said he packed an assault weapon in the manner of an AR-15 “to protect myself.” It had been acquired by a buddy because he was too young to legally purchase a firearm.

When it became dark, a group of heavily armed individuals approached the demonstrators and engaged them in a firefight.

Joseph Rosenbaum, who had recently been discharged from a mental health treatment facility, was among those in the gathering to celebrate.

It appears that Mr Rosenbaum’s actions were recorded on camera at the site, which shows him apparently putting a trash can on fire before being seen goading armed men.

“Shoot me,” he sarcastically teases.

His critics, on the other hand, characterised him as a “babbling fool” who did not pose a significant threat, and as such, they dismissed the charges against him.

An infrared video recorded by an FBI plane watching the protests a short time later shows Mr Rosenbaum, who seems as nothing more than an insignificant white dot, sprinting down the street towards a car yard with Mr Rittenhouse trailing behind him in the background.

Then their paths came together.

In his closing argument before the jury, prosecutor Thomas Binger said that Mr Rittenhouse initiated the altercation by saying, “We don’t know precisely what was going on, we don’t know what words were used.”

During his testimony, Mr Rittenhouse stated that he “didn’t notice Mr Rosenbaum until he stepped out from behind the car and attacked me.”

Following then, a bystander video taken from a distance caught what transpired.

When Mr Rittenhouse doesn’t show up, Mr Rosenbaum starts after him. While he is doing so, an unknown onlooker discharges a handgun into the air for no apparent reason.

It’s something the two of them can hear but cannot see.

During his often painful evidence, Mr Rittenhouse described how, as he was turning around, Mr Rosenbaum was “coming at me with his arms out in front of him” from where he was to where the judge was sitting.

“I recall his finger resting on the barrel of my rifle.”

When I got to the end of the road, there was nowhere further to go.

Mr. Rittenhouse shoots him four times in the head and neck.

During the trial, prosecutors emphasised that the fatal gunshot was a shot to the back that was fired as Mr Rosenbaum slumped forwards into the concrete.

Bystanders rushed quickly to the gunfire, and a small group of them helped Mr Rosenbaum, who had been fatally injured, to a hospital that happened to be right across the street from where he was shot.

Rittenhouse, on the other hand, did not stay to provide a hand.

A buddy receives a phone call from him saying, “I just shot somebody.”
In the video, the audience can be heard yelling for someone to stop him as he hurries away from the scene.

Mr Rittenhouse begins to flee back towards a police line that has been formed up approximately three blocks away, but several members of the mob, assuming he is a “active shooter,” go after him and take him into custody.

Protester Anthony Huber and self-described medic Gaige Grosskreutz are among those who surround him, and each of them is shot in a matter of seconds by the gunman.

As Mr Rittenhouse sprints towards the police line, he trips and is kicked in the head by an unidentified member of the mob while he is still lying on the ground.

The gunshot from Mr Rittenhouse is blocked by Mr Huber’s skateboard just as Mr Rittenhouse attempts to strike Mr Huber with his skateboard but misses.

Mr Huber is killed when the youngster shoots him in the chest after a skirmish between the two. At the same time, Mr Grosskreutz charges up to the table, his weapon drawn.

“I honestly believed that I was going to die,” Mr Grosskreutz testified later in the trial.

Immediately following a brief pause during which Mr Grosskreutz lifts his hands, he advances ahead. Mr Rittenhouse was later interrogated, and he agreed that his action indicated that he was aiming the gun at him, however he maintained that he had no intention of shooting him.

Mr Rittenhouse shoots him in the arm, and he rises to his feet and goes to the police lines with his hands raised.

Despite the fact that the adolescent approaches a police cruiser, he is not detained.

They advise him to go home, seemingly completely oblivious to the two deceased guys a short way down the street from them.

Despite the fact that Mr Rittenhouse surrendered himself to Illinois police a short time later, political divisions were already brewing over whether he was an aggressor or someone who had exercised his second amendment rights by arming himself in self-defence.

A statement was issued in support of the youngster, who had apparently been sitting in the front row of one of President Donald Trump’s rallies earlier in the year.

“It appears that he was attempting to get away from them,” President Trump declared a week after the incident.

“He was thrown to the ground, and they aggressively assaulted him… He would almost certainly have been killed.”

During the time when conservative groups were raising money for his bail, Kyle’s family began selling “Free Kyle” items, which was swiftly removed from the market by an internet merchant.

Various parts of an increasingly polarised America depicted him as an armed vigilante whose presence energised the demonstrations.

Gun safety activists, such as Ryan Busse, a former executive in the firearms business, expressed concern that Mr Rittenhouse would become “some heroic martyr” who would make it “glamorous to go shoot somebody with a weapon.”

Ayanna Pressley, a Democratic congresswoman from Massachusetts, went so far as to label the youngster a “domestic terrorist.”

Despite the fact that some of Mr Rittenhouse’s supporters in conservative and far-right groups made their way into the courtroom as preparations for his trial began, the jury was not confronted with the full extent of their efforts.

On bail, he was caught standing with members of the far-right organisation Proud Boys, which has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre, and performing a hand motion that has been associated with white supremacist hate speech.

He was sporting a tee-shirt with the words “free as f***” written across the front.

In Miami, he also had a meeting with the group’s national president.

The court modified his bail terms to specifically prohibit him from interacting with white supremacists; nonetheless, the court finally concluded that proof of his meetings with the group could not be brought to the jury.

Another setback for prosecutors occurred when Judge Bruce Schroeder ordered that counsel for the two deceased men and Mr Grosskreutz refrain from referring to them as “victims” throughout the trial.

Also abandoned was the prosecution’s attempt to depict Mr Huber as a “hero” for attempting to intercept Mr Rittenhouse in the first place.

However, the court determined that defence attorneys were free to depict the three as looters, arsonists, or rioters if they could demonstrate their innocence.

When Judge Schroeder’s phone rang during the trial, the left’s doubts about him were only heightened.

His ringtone was Lee Greenwood’s God Bless the USA, which was the same song that Mr Trump had used to take the stage at a number of events during his campaign for president.

Rather than whether Mr Rittenhouse’s trip to Kenosha was a good idea, the question at the heart of the trial was whether he should have gone. His political circus around his acts was also not examined in depth during the trial either.

The jury was asked to consider whether a reasonable person would have seen a danger to their life that justified the use of a firearm in the manner in which Mr Rittenhouse did if confronted with the identical circumstances.

Only two conflicts were deadly that night, both involving the teenager, according to prosecutors, who referred to Mr Rittenhouse as a “chaos tourist.”

However, despite hundreds of clashes between individuals of drastically different viewpoints that night, only two were fatal, and both included the youngster.

A spokesman for Mr Binger stated that “hundreds of people were out on the streets witnessing turmoil and violence, and the only one who murdered anyone” was the defendant.

“When you’re the one who brought the gun, when you’re the one who created the threat, when you’re the one who provokes other people, you forfeit your right to self-defence.”

However, the defence contended that this was merely due to the fact that Mr Rittenhouse was the only one who had been attacked in the manner in which he claimed to have been.

His attorneys emphasised that each time he discharged his weapon, he was in close proximity to someone who appeared to be a threat to him.

“Everyone who was shot was assaulting Kyle – one with a skateboard, one with his hands, one with a gun,” Kyle’s attorney Mark Richards said. “Everyone who was shot was attacking Kyle.”

The testimony in the courtroom appeared to support the teenager’s claims of self-defence at times, with prosecution witnesses such as Mr Grosskreutz admitting that his revolver was pointing at the youngster when he was struck by a gunshot.

The adolescent’s claims of self-defence were rejected by the jury.

Although Mr Rittenhouse was questioned by the prosecution, it was Mr Binger’s questioning of Mr Rittenhouse that came the case so close to being dismissed. Mr Binger inquired if it was right to use lethal force to protect property.

In order to contrast Mr Rittenhouse’s response with a video showing a teenager expressing his want to shoot shoplifters two weeks before the Kenosha demonstration, he had hoped to display a video of the adolescent expressing his desire to shoot shoplifters.

Judge Schroeder had previously stated that he did not want the jury to be seen the recording unless the evidence presented during the trial convinced him otherwise.

The prosecutor’s behaviour caused the judge to sternly reprimand him while the defence sought a mistrial – the first of two efforts they made to have the case dismissed.

Regardless of the political climate in which the trial was held, Judge Schroeder emphasised to the jury the need of being impartial and not being swayed.

The President of the United States, as well as the presidents who came before him, were told that they would have no influence on them.

The jury returned a judgement of not guilty on all charges.

After Mr Rittenhouse murdered Mr Huber and Mr Rosenbaum, the demonstrations in Kenosha continued.

Some, though, were particularly dissatisfied with what they believed to be a disparity in treatment between Black Lives Matter protestors and armed individuals such as Mr Rittenhouse.

Those who violated the curfew during the Kenosha protests, according to a class-action complaint filed in Wisconsin’s Eastern District Court, were subjected to “two sets of laws.”

Following the Kenosha protests, more than 150 nonviolent protestors were detained for violating the curfew, according to a lawsuit filed by Black Lives Matter activists.

None of them belonged to the pro-police organisations, many of which were armed, with which Mr Rittenhouse was involved.

Police officers handing water to Mr Rittenhouse’s group before the shooting and stating, “We thank you guys, we truly do,” were in stark contrast to the 150 arrests, according to the footage.

They claim that because of this disparity, Black Lives Matter demonstrators would never have been allowed to carry out the actions of Mr Rittenhouse that night, and instead would have been ordered to “go home.”

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