Nov. 19, 2021
After four days of deliberation, the jury found Kyle Rittenhouse not guiltily of all charges.
Rittenhouse, now 18, shot two people and wounded a third during riots on the night of Aug. 25, 2020, in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Last week, Rittenhouse took the stand, a high-stakes gamble by the defense. Rittenhouse maintained his innocent through a gurgling cross-examination, telling the jury he did not want to kill anyone, but felt his life was threatened.
In closing arguments, Rittenhouse’s attorneys said he acted in self-defense, while prosecutors painted Rittenhouse as murder. Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger claimed Rittenhouse was an “active shooter.” He continued, “And every day we read about heroes that stop active shooters. That’s what was going on here. And that crowd was right. And that crowd was full of heroes.”
During his closing statements, Binger pointed Rittenhouse’s AR-15 in the courtroom, his finger on the trigger, leading many to point out that Binger has no idea how to safety handle a firearm.
Binger claimed Rittenhouse provoked the violence and incorrectly told the jury, “You lose the right to self-defense when you’re the one who brought the gun, when you are the one creating the danger, when you’re the one provoking other people.”
Rittenhouse’s defense attorney Mark Richards countered that the shooting started after the young man was ambushed by a “crazy person” that night and became afraid his gun was going to be wrested away and used to kill him and others.
“Mr. Rosenbaum was shot because he was chasing my client and going to kill him, take his gun and carry out the threats he made,” Richards said.
In a stern tone, Richards told the jury he was glad Rittenhouse shot Rossenbaum, saying that if Rittenhouse had not shot him, Rossenbaum would’ve stolen Rittenhouse’s gun shot the teen before turning the gun on other people.
Richards said Rittenhouse was then attacked by a “mob.” The defense attorney accused prosecutors of calling Rittenhouse an “active shooter” because of “the loaded connotations of that word.”
In his instructions, the judge said that to accept Rittenhouse’s claim of self-defense, the jury must find that he believed there was an unlawful threat to him and that the amount of force he used was reasonable and necessary.
While the jury deliberated, Rittenhouse’s defense team filed a motion accusing the prosecutors of misconduct by withholding an HD drone video of the shooting. The higher quality drone video shows the critical moments just before Rittenhouse shot Joseph Rosenbaum.
The video calls into question prosecutors’ claims that Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse in “self-defense” and provides context for Rittenhouse’s assertion that he believed journalist Richie McGennis was chasing him.
Prosecutors countered by saying the compression of the video occurred by accident and described the oversight as “glitch” and “technicality.” In the courtroom, prosecutor Kraus told the judge the error occurred when the file was shared by a police detective.
After four days of deliberations, the jury cleared Rittenhouse of any criminal wrongdoing.Thanks