500 Members of the National Guard are Prepared for Violence
The 12-person jury has found Kyle Rittenhouse not guilty on all counts in his trial connected to the shootings of three people during unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin during the summer of 2020.
The decision comes on the fourth day of deliberations as jurors weighed charges against Rittenhouse deciding whether he was the instigator of a night of violence in Kenosha or a concerned citizen who came under attack while trying to protect property.
Rittenhouse was 17 when he went to Kenosha from his home in Antioch, Illinois, in what he said was an effort to protect property from rioters in the days after Jacob Blake was shot by a Kenosha police officer.
Now 18, Rittenhouse was tried for killing two men and wounding a third in self defense with a rifle during a turbulent night of protests that erupted in Kenosha in the summer of 2020.
Rittenhouse faced life in prison if convicted on the most serious charge for using an AR-style semi-automatic rifle that killed and wounded the men who attempted to attack him.
Even as the jury weighed the evidence, two mistrial requests from the defense hung over the case, with the potential to upend the verdict if the panel were to convict Rittenhouse. One of those requests asks the judge to go even further and bar prosecutors from retrying him.
In a fast-moving series of clashes in the streets, Rittenhouse shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and wounded Gaige Grosskreutz, now 28.
Testimony and video from both sides showed Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse down and made a grab for his rifle, causing him to fear the weapon was going to be used against him. Video showed Huber violently attacking the young man and hitting him with a skateboard.
Grosskreutz admitted he had his own gun pointed at Rittenhouse when he was shot.
Once the verdicts were read, Rittenhouse cried and hugged one of his attorneys.
Judge Bruce Schroeder thanked the jury for their efforts and sent them home.
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers pleaded for calm and said 500 National Guard members would be ready to move into Kenosha if violence erupted.
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