Protesters trace the route Rittenhouse took in Kenosha
Kenosha, Wes. — Dozens of people gathered under a wind-swept Wisconsin flag at Civic Center Park in Kenosha on Sunday and braced for chants of justice before taking to the streets to protest the acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse.
Demonstrators traced the route Rittenhouse took on an August night last year when he shot and killed two people and wounded a third during protests against police brutality. They carried banners reading “Reject the terror of racist guards” and “The whole system is guilty!” Two of the protesters carried long rifles.
Protesters regularly chanted, “No justice, no peace” and “Anthony and Joe Joe,” the latter referring to Anthony Hopper and Joseph Rosenbaum, both of whom were killed by Rittenhouse.
Reverend Jesse Jackson, 80, who walked the first leg of a protest march in Chicago on Saturday, was scheduled to appear in Kenosha, but he did not show up. Instead, the organizers said, he was working with leaders in Congress to ask the Department of Justice to investigate the case for further prosecution. A statement issued by the Rainbow PUSH Alliance in Jackson earlier Sunday said the Department of Justice should also consider aiding and abetting Rittenhouse’s mother.
“The verdict of acquittal is very revealing of the state of criminal justice in America,” Bishop Grant, Field Director of the National Rainbow PUSH Coalition said in a statement.
While Grant’s statement said Rittenhouse violated federal laws, it did not elaborate further and experts say Rittenhouse is unlikely to face federal charges because federal law applies only in very limited cases of murder.
Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old former police student in Antioch, Illinois, said he went to Kenosha with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle to protect property from rioters, but was attacked and feared for his life. life.
The shooting took place during a tumultuous night of protests over the shooting of black man Jacob Blake by a white police officer in Kenosha.
Rittenhouse is white, like those he shot, and his acquittal led to new debates about racial justice, vigilance, and policing in America.
Derek Johnson, NAACP President and CEO, said Sunday that the ruling has been difficult for African Americans to reconcile.
“Here you have a 17-year-old who bought a gun illegally, traveled across state borders to protect property that wasn’t his, to two owners who didn’t invite him, and he put himself in harm’s way based on the rhetoric he saw on social media platforms,” Johnson told the show. “Face the Nation” on CBS. He described it as “a warning shot that civil justice is permitted in this country or in certain communities.”
Rittenhouse’s lawyers described him as a frightened teenager who had been shot to save his life.
“I had no intention of killing them,” Rittenhouse testified. “I intended to stop the people who were attacking me.”
Find AP’s full coverage of the Kyle Rittenhouse trial at: https://apnews.com/hub/kyle-rittenhouse
Copyright 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.