A jury in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse has reached a verdict. Rittenhouse has been found not guilty on all charges levied against him.
The journey to today's verdict began the week of August 25, 2020 when Kyle Rittenhouse traveled from Illinois to Wisconsin following the police shooting of Jacob Blake. During his time in Kenosha, Rittenhouse claims he was attempting to administer CPR to those in need and protect the property of others. However, his visit to the Wisconsin town turned violent when he encountered a man by the name of Joseph Rosenbaum.
Early portions of the defense's case focused on Rittenhouse's interactions with Rosenbaum. Army infantryman Ryan Galch testified that Rosenbaum was “hyperaggressive and acting out in a violent manner" on the the night of August 25, 2020. Galch also noted that Rosenbaum had threatened him and Rittenhouse earlier in the evening.
"If I catch any of you guys alone tonight I’m going to f----- kill you," Rosenbaum shouted at Galch and Rittenhouse, according to The Hill.
Later that night, conservative journalist Richie McGinnis testified that Rosenbaum confronted Rittenhouse a second time. According to his testimony, Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse until they reached a "dead end." As the encounter unfolded, McGinnis claims Rosenbaum began "lunging" at Rittenhouse's weapon and the teenage gunman fatally shot him.
Not long after shooting and killing Rosenbaum, Rittenhouse was confronted by other protesters. One of the many people who confronted Rittenhouse was Anthony Huber. Rittenhouse's legal team claims Huber attacked him and "bashed" him over the head with a skateboard before the teenager fatally shot him. However, Huber's family disagrees.
"He sacrificed his own life to protect innocent civilians who were out that night protesting the shooting of Jacob Blake," Huber's parents told NBC News.
"Without his incredible bravery, many others could have been killed or injured."
A criminal complaint filed on behalf of Huber says that Rittenhouse reached for his gun and he used his skateboard as a method of defense.
"Huber has a skateboard in his right hand. When Huber reaches the defendant it appears that he is reaching for the defendant’s gun with his left hand as the skateboard makes contact with the defendant’s left shoulder. Huber appears to be trying to pull the gun away from the defendant," the complaint reads, according to NBC News.
"The defendant rolls towards his left side and as Huber appears to be trying to grab the gun the gun is pointed at Huber’s body. The defendant then fires one round which can be heard on the video. Huber staggers away, taking several steps, then collapses to the ground. Huber subsequently died from this gunshot wound."
The violence of August 25, 2020 didn't end there. Rittenhouse also shot and injured a man by the name of Gaige Grosskreutz. Grosskreutz said that he was approximately one block away from Rittenhouse when Rosenbaum was killed. When he heard the gunshots, he ran toward the area in hopes of providing medical support if needed. As he neared the chaos, he witnessed Huber confront Rittenhouse. After watching Rittenhouse shoot Huber, the teenager gunman pointed his gun at Grosskreutz. Armed with a pistol, Grosskreutz drew his pistol with the intent of using it only if necessary.
"I was never trying to kill the defendant," he testified, according to NPR.
"In that moment, I was trying to preserve my own life. But doing so while also taking the life of another is not something that I'm capable of or comfortable doing."
According to NPR, video evidence shows that Grosskreutz held his arms in the air with the hopes of de-escalating situation. Still, Rittenhouse shot and injured Grosskreutz.
In the aftermath of August 25, 2020, Rittenhouse was charged with first-degree reckless homicide, attempted first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree intentional homicide and two counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety. He also faced charges of illegal gun possession and breaking curfew, but Kenosha County Circuit Court Judge Bruce Schroeder dismissed both of those charges.
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The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
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The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America 1-240-485-1001
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