December 3, 2021

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Kyle Rittenhouse trial – live: Case heads to jury ahead of deliberations after closing arguments end – The Independent

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Watch live as closing arguments are made in Kyle Rittenhouse trial

Prosecutors condemned Kyle Rittenhouse for “bringing a gun to a fistfight” during closing arguments on the 10th day of the trial.

Prosecutor Thomas Binger began his closing argument by branding Mr Rittenhouse “the only killer” on the night in question and dismissed the self-defence argument, saying: “You cannot claim self-defence against a danger you create.” Mr Binger dramatised his words by mimicking Mr Rittenhouse holding a gun and pointing it at the jury.

In closing for the defence, attorney Mark Richards accused Mr Binger of “lying” and told the jury: “This case is not a game. This is my client’s life.”

Monday’s hearing opened with Judge Bruce Schroeder granting a defence motion to dismiss one misdemeanour count against Mr Rittenhouse for possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18.

Mr Rittenhouse, 18, has been charged with homicide in the deaths of two men he shot during a night of protests and riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin last year – Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26. He also shot a third man, Gaige Grosskreutz, who was wounded but survived.

With the end of closing arguments, the case has been handed to the jury ahead of deliberations beginning Tuesday morning.

Follow the latest updates live:


Jury deliberations to start Tuesday

The jury for the trial fo Kyle Rittenhouse will begin deliberations on Tuesday, according to Judge Bruce Schroeder.

The panel of 18 jurors is made up of eight men and 10 women and is due to be narrowed down to 12 on Tuesday morning.

The final 12 will be chosen at random using a raffle drum.

Jurors have been asked to return to the court at 10am ET on Tuesday.

Eleanor Sly16 November 2021 09:14


Demonstrations outside Kenosha County court

Protesters gathered outside Kenosha County Courthouse on Monday night, demanding justice for the victims’ families, reported Newsweek.

Among the demonstrators outside court was Justin Blake, the uncle of Jacob Blake whose killing last year sparked the unrest in Kenosha.

“There’s racism throughout this whole trial,” he said. “We’re here to make sure people focus on the issues, not the sideshow. Let’s talk about the issues, let’s view the tapes, hopefully, they concentrate on the tapes and we believe they’ll come out with that he’s guilty as hell.”

The outlet reported that the supporters of Mr Rittenhouse also gathered outside the courtroom with one woman holding a sign saying: “Kyle is the only victim, Use your eyes not the lies. Self-defence is not an offence”.

Namita Singh16 November 2021 07:00


PolitiFact fact-checked for ‘illegal firearm possesion’ claim in Rittenhouse case

PolitiFact is being roasted for claiming that Rittenhouse’s possession of a firearm was not legal, after the charge was dropped in court.

In their August 2020 fact-check, the portal argued that in Illinois, concealed carry applicants must be at least 21 years old and since Mr Rittenhouse was 17 at the time, “he was not legally old enough to carry a firearm in Wisconsin.”

“In Wisconsin, it is legal for adults to carry firearms in public without a license if the gun is visible. However, to open carry, you must be at least 18 years old,” PolitiFact added.

The claim came under fire on Monday after the defense argued successfully that Wisconsin’s statute was limited to short-barrelled shotguns or rifles, while Mr Rittenhouse was carrying an AR-style semi-automatic rifle with a long barrel, leading to the dismissal of the charge against him.

File: Kyle Rittenhouse walks along Sheridan Road in Kenosha, in this 25 August 2020 file photo. Before midnight, he used his Smith & Wesson AR-style semi-automatic to shoot three people, killing two

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File: Kyle Rittenhouse walks along Sheridan Road in Kenosha, in this 25 August 2020 file photo. Before midnight, he used his Smith & Wesson AR-style semi-automatic to shoot three people, killing two


Namita Singh16 November 2021 06:22


Charges faced by Kyle Rittenhouse

The 18-year-old faces multiple charges for shooting three men, killing two and wounding a third, during the protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin in August 2020.

Count 1: First-degree reckless homicide, use of a dangerous weapon

Mr Rittenhouse has been charged with reckless homicide in the death of Joseph Rosenbaum, the first man that he shot that night. Under reckless homicide, the prosecutors are not alleging that the accused intended to murder the man but that he caused his death, showing disregard for human life. The charge is punishable with up to 60 years of imprisonment. The use of a dangerous weapon carries an additional five years.

Count 2: First-degree recklessly endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon

This felony charge is connected to the Rosenbaum shooting. A reporter, Richie McGinnis, who was trailing Mr Rittenhouse, told the investigators that he was in the line of fire when Mr Rittenhouse shot Rosenbaum. The offence is punishable with 12 and a half years in prison, with weapons modifier carrying another five years.

Count 3: First degree recklessly endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon

This is connected to the 18-year-old apparently firing at a man who leapt at him before Anthony Huber moved his skateboard at Mr Rittenhouse. The man apparently avoided the shots fired by Mr Rittenhouse and ran away but the felony is punishable by 12 and a half years in prison.

Count 4: First degree intentional homicide, use of a dangerous weapon

Under the criminal complaint, Mr Rittenhouse intentionally killed Huber. The felony carries a mandatory life sentence. There is also the option of second-degree intentional homicide and first-degree reckless homicide in Huber’s death, with the former carrying a prison term of up to 60 years.

Count 5: Attempted first-degree intentional homicide, use of a dangerous weapon

This is connected to Mr Rittenhouse shooting Gaige Grosskreutz, the only survivor of the three people that Mr Rittenhouse shot on 25 August 2020. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 60 years, with the use of weapons modifier adding another five.

Count 6: Possession of dangerous weapon by a person under 18

The judge dismissed this charge on Monday. Under Wisconsin law, anyone under 18 who possesses a dangerous weapon is guilty of a misdemeanour punishable by up to nine months behind bars.

Mr Rittenhouse’s attorneys seized on a subsection of the Wisconsin law that they argued limited it to short-barrelled shotguns or rifles. Mr Rittenhouse’s AR-15-style rifle was not short-barrelled.

Additional reporting by AP

Namita Singh16 November 2021 05:44


Why did judge drop Rittenhouse gun charge?

Rittenhouse was 17 when he shot three people, killing two, with a semi-automatic rifle on the streets of Kenosha Wisconsin, during a protest against police brutality last year. Prosecutors brought multiple charges against him, including first-degree intentional homicide, attempted homicide, reckless endangerment and the firearm possession count.

With legal experts saying prosecutors struggled to counter the Illinois man’s claims of self-defense, the best bet for a conviction looked like the gun charge. But Rittenhouse’s defense team dug up an exception to the prohibition and Judge Bruce Schroeder dismissed the count Monday, just hours before jurors got the case.

Under Wisconsin law, anyone under 18 who possesses a dangerous weapon is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to nine months behind bars.

Rittenhouse’s attorneys seized on a subsection of the Wisconsin law that they argued limited it to short-barreled shotguns or rifles. Rittenhouse’s AR-15-style rifle was not short-barreled.

They asked Schroeder to dismiss the possession count on those grounds at a pretrial hearing in October. The judge acknowledged the intersection of the statutes was murky but ultimately refused to toss the charge. He said he might revisit the defense request, however.

But this time Schroeder dismissed the charge after prosecutor James Kraus acknowledged that Rittenhouse’s rifle wasn’t a short-barreled. The judge noted that prosecutors filed a “very nice brief” laying out their arguments but that it should have been clear he had a “big problem” with the prohibition statute.

– Associated Press

Justin Vallejo16 November 2021 04:00


Raffle drum will set final 12 Rittenhouse jurors

The judge in Kyle Rittenhouse’s murder trial will use a raffle drum that sat in the courtroom throughout the two-week trial to select the names of alternate jurors who were dismissed from the pool of 18 to get to the final 12 who will decide the case.

Schroeder told jurors last week that he would select as many names as necessary from the tumbler Tuesday to go from 18 down to 12. The pool had started at 20, but one juror was dismissed for health reasons and another was let go after he told a joke related to the case to a bailiff.

The jury was to begin deliberations on Tuesday after closing arguments consumed the full day Monday.

Rittenhouse faces a myriad of charges after he killed two protesters and injured a third on the streets of Kenosha last summer. The protests were spurred by the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man. – AP

Justin Vallejo16 November 2021 03:00


Closing arguments from the defense

While prosecutors painted Rittenhouse as an inexperienced instigator, and defense lawyers insisted the shootings were justified.

Here are some takeaways from defense attorney Mark Richards:


Richards focused on Grosskreutz’s testimony that he didn’t know his own pistol had a round in the chamber when he ran up to Rittenhouse. Grosskreutz has filed a lawsuit against the city of Kenosha alleging police conspired with armed militia the night he was shot; he’s seeking $10 million.

Richards argued that the state’s witnesses actually helped Rittenhouse’s case, pointing out that a police detective seemed to agree that Rosenbaum came out of hiding to chase Rittenhouse; a forensic pathologist testified that Rittenhouse shot Rosenbaum at close range, within 4 feet, bolstering the defense argument that Rosenbaum reached for Rittenhouse’s rifle; and others in Rittenhouse’s group testified they had permission to guard the car dealership.


Richards lambasted the prosecution’s use of an enlarged photo taken from drone video that a state crime lab analyst testified he took 20 hours to produce.

“What he did for those 20 hours is hocus pocus,” Richards said in urging jurors to reject consideration of the image. “And he makes an exhibit that is out of focus.”


Richards said Binger’s office never reassessed their case after video evidence showed Rittenhouse acted in self-defense. He said prosecutors want to hold someone responsible for bringing “terror” to Kenosha’s streets.

– Associated Press

Justin Vallejo16 November 2021 02:00


Closing arguments from the prosecution

Attorneys in Kyle Rittenhouse s murder trial sparred for the last time Monday during closing arguments, with prosecutors painting Kyle Rittenhouse as an inexperienced instigator.

Here are some takeaways from Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger.


Binger painted Rittenhouse as a fraud. He said Rittenhouse told people at the protest that he was an emergency medical technician when he was really just a lifeguard.


Binger also portrayed Rittenhouse as an active shooter and said people in the crowd had a right to stop him. He said Rittenhouse denied shooting Rosenbaum when Grosskreutz and another man, Jason Lackowski, asked him what happened immediately after the shots were fired.

Binger tried to get jurors to see Rittenhouse, who lived in nearby Antioch, Illinois, as one of a horde of outsiders who came to Kenosha to play soldier during the protest, ignoring roadblocks, curfew orders and closed interstate exits.


Binger focused largely on Rosenbaum’s actions, trying to counter Rittenhouse’s assertions that Rosenbaum was causing trouble all night, swinging a chain, demanding people shoot him, spewing racial slurs and setting fires. Binger described Rosenbaum as a small man — he stood at 5 feet 4 — with a “Napoleon complex” but he was harmless.


Binger wrapped up his arguments by asking jurors to ask themselves if they would have reacted like Rittenhouse in the same situation.

“Would a reasonable person have done the same thing?” Binger said.

– Associated Press

Justin Vallejo16 November 2021 01:00


Judge tells jury not to listen to the president ahead of deliberations

The court has adjourned after closing arguments, with Judge Bruce Schroeder telling jurors to disregard the president in their deliberations.

In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, Joe Biden suggested in a tweet that Kyle Rittenhouse was a white supremacist.

Mr Rittenhouse’s mother, Wendy Rittenhouse, told Fox News the president “defamed” her son.

Mr Schroeder said told the jury that they alone have the power and duty to decide the case based solely on the evidence.

“You will pay no heed to the opinions of anyone, even the president of the United States, or the president before him,” Mr Schroeder said.

Justin Vallejo16 November 2021 00:02


Rittenhouse brought’ gun to a fist fight’, says prosecutor

James Kraus says Kyle Rittenhouse “brought a gun to a fistfight”.

“He was too cowardly to use his own fists to fight his way out. He had to start shooting,” the Kenosha DA said.

Justin Vallejo15 November 2021 23:53

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