Kyle Rittenhouse (Courtesy photo)
Kyle Rittenhouse (Courtesy photo)

Kyle Rittenhouse escaped punishment in the shooting deaths of two men during the unrest that followed the 2020 police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The jury deliberated for about four days, before issuing unanimous verdicts on all counts.

The jury considered five charges against the now-18-year-old: First-degree reckless homicide, use of a dangerous weapon – or that Rittenhouse recklessly caused the death of Rosenbaum under circumstances that showed utter disregard for human life.

First-degree recklessly endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon – or that Rittenhouse recklessly endangered the safety of Richard McGinnis – a journalist with the conservative “Daily Caller” – under circumstances that show utter disregard for human life.

First-degree intentional homicide, use of a dangerous weapon – or that Rittenhouse did cause the death of Huber, with intent to kill him.

First-degree recklessly endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon – or that Rittenhouse did recklessly endanger the safety of an unknown male, referred to as “jump kick man” in court, under circumstances that show utter disregard for human life.

Attempted first-degree intentional homicide, use of a weapon – or that Rittenhouse attempted to cause the death of Grosskreutz, with intent to kill him.

“We are heartbroken and angry that Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted in his criminal trial for the murder of our son, Anthony Huber,” Huber’s family wrote in a statement immediately following the verdict.

Huber, 26, and Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, were killed by Rittenhouse during the August 2020 unrest. Gaige Grosskreutz, 27, suffered gunshot wounds and survived.

“There was no justice today for Anthony or for Mr. Rittenhouse’s other victims,” the family noted.

The family explained that they decided not to attend the trial because they couldn’t stomach watching videos of their loved one’s murder.

“We watched the trial closely hoping it would bring us closure,” the family wrote.

Civil rights attorney Lee Merritt also slammed the verdicts.

“The Rittenhouse decision undermines basic protections afforded to all citizens and encourages vigilantism,” Merritt said. “The law has never loaned the protections of self-defense to instigators of violence. This verdict was reached in contradiction to that law.”

Bernice King, the daughter of slain civil rights hero Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., encouraged her Twitter followers to help effect change in America.

“This verdict is not surprising, family,” King wrote. “We know where we are. Let’s walk and work together to shift this nation and world.”

King continued:

“Let’s walk and work together by standing for truth-telling in our schools and faith groups – persisting for legislative and legislator change at the polls, pressing to change this nation’s fascination with guns and acquiescence to gun violence.”

“I know so many are weary and tired. But justice is not just about verdicts. It is a continuum. We can galvanize around changing our culture, including challenging the difference in how a Black male teen would have been engaged in Kenosha,” King wrote.

Sam P.K. Collins

Sam P.K. Collins has more than a decade of experience as a journalist, columnist and organizer. Sam, a millennial and former editor of WI Bridge, covers education, police brutality, politics, and other...

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