Kenosha Protest Shootings kyle rittenhouse trial
Kyle Rittenhouse appears at a pretrial hearing in Kenosha Circuit Court, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (Mark Hertzberg/Pool Photo via AP)
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By Scott Bauer and Michael Tarm, AP

The trial of Kyle Rittenhouse kicks off Monday with the challenging task of seating jurors who haven’t already made up their minds about the man who shot three people, killing two, during a violent night of protests last year.

Rittenhouse was 17 when he made the short trip north from his home in Illinois, just across the Wisconsin border, during protests that broke out in August 2020 after a white police officer shot Jacob Blake, a black man. Rittenhouse, now 18, faces life in prison if he’s convicted of first-degree homicide, one of several charges against him.

Judge Bruce Schroeder, who has experience presiding over high-profile trials, told attorneys he thinks picking the 20-member jury pool from 150 prospective jurors can be accomplished in a day. The trial is expected to last two to three weeks.

Prosecutors and the defense will be sifting the jury pool in hopes of seating panelists friendly to their view of the case — or at least keeping off the jury anyone who’s not.

William Hanrahan, who spent 19 years as a prosecutor and was a Wisconsin circuit judge for 13, said the attorneys will also be trying to influence potential jurors.

Defense Attorney Mark Richards appears in court during a pre-trial hearing for Kyle Rittenhouse at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., on Monday, Oct. 25, 2021.  (Mark Hertzberg/Pool Photo via AP)

“What each side is going to do is attempt to prejudice the jury right out of the chute, to strategically plant seeds to subtly set forth their positions,” Hanrahan said. “For a seasoned judge, it’s going to be a challenge here because some lawyers are really good and able to slowly introduce their case in the form of questions to the potential jurors.”

Attorneys for both sides urged the judge to send questionnaires to the people summoned as potential jurors to detect bias and speed the process. Schroeder, 75, the longest-serving circuit court judge in Wisconsin, denied the request.

The judge said he disliked questionnaires in general because he was afraid most people won’t fill them out or that it would tip them off that they may be on the Rittenhouse case, increasing the chances they would discuss it with friends and family.

Schroeder said each side will be allowed to strike seven people to reach a total of 20 jurors. The judge hasn’t specified how many of those would be alternates.

Hanrahan, who presided over hundreds of jury trials, said he rarely allowed questionnaires and he doesn’t think their absence in this case will mean much. It’s always difficult seating a jury in a high-profile case, particularly now with 24-hour news catering to one viewpoint or another, Hanrahan said.

Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger is seen during the pretrial hearing of Kyle Rittenhouse in Kenosha Circuit Court, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021, in Kenosha, Wis.  (Mark Hertzberg/Pool Photo via AP)

Hanrahan said the process could be done in a day if the judge is aggressive in limiting questions attorneys can ask.

“As a judge I would be asking (potential jurors) to make that commitment to set aside what they believe the facts to be and set aside what they believe the law to be,” Hanrahan said. “To essentially be a tabula rasa, a blank slate.”

Rittenhouse faces two homicide counts, one of attempted homicide and two of recklessly endangering safety for firing his weapon near others. He’s also charged with possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18.

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71 COMMENTS

  1. I wonder if there is at least 1 patriot out of 12 remaining in Wisconsin?

    I wonder if the jury members realize and understand that nothing can be trusted from federal, state, and local government agents and actors? Lying is the standard operating procedure from government and anything that it says can logically be ignored or assumed to be 180 degrees from the truth.

    Jury nullification is a valid solution to one side using the justice system as a political weapon in one direction.

  2. I hope this young man is found not guilty of all charges although possession of a weapon while underage is probably a given.

        • actually there is, Kyle was 17 at the time.

          Wisconsin state law 948.60(2)(a) states: “Any person under 18 years of age who possesses or goes armed with a dangerous weapon is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.”

          But there is an exception to that and that is “when the dangerous weapon is being used in target practice under the supervision of an adult or in a course of instruction in the traditional and proper use of the dangerous weapon under the supervision of an adult.”

          Wisconsin statute 948.60(3)(c) states: “This section applies only to a person under 18 years of age who possesses or is armed with a rifle or a shotgun if the person is in violation of s. 941.28 or is not in compliance with ss. 29.304 and 29.593.”

          Statute 29.304(3)(b) states: “No person 14 years of age or older but under 16 years of age may have in his or her possession or control any firearm” with added exceptions listed.

          The possession is a misdemeanor, but that’s not actually the problem with his possession even if a judge dismisses it as a straight minor in posession.

          The real issue with his possession is how he procured the rifle. He gave cash to a friend to buy it for him. His friend was 19, Kyle was underage in the state for purchase. He employed a “straw purchase” to get a rifle. When he was carrying that rifle, he knew how he procured it and violated the law to get it – he was knowingly in possession of an illegally purchased firearm thus in illegal possession. His friend has been arrested and charged for it, I expect Kyle will be too when this trial is over.

        • Courts have ruled that even ILLEGAL possession of a weapon is irrelevant during self defense – a good shoot is a good shoot. The legality of possession is a separate issue that does not impact the validity of the self defense claim.
          He could absolutely be cleared of all charges related to the shootings, and the state law will probably have to clear him of the possession charges since he seems to have met some exemptions, but he could still be convicted of fed straw transfers – but not at a state level trial unless the state also has straw transfer laws.

      • Under age? Last I checked the second amendment didn’t have restrictions for age, gender, race, political beliefs, sexual preference, or mental well being. Kyle had the same rights any of us do to own and possess a firearm, my 3 year old has her own rifle so why can’t he at 17?

        • I didn’t write the law that doesn’t mean Kyle and his attorneys aren’t going to have to deal with the crap that is on the law books in Wisconsin. The 2nd Amendment is pretty damn clear. Shall not be infringed. Not my fault it’s been bastardized over the years.

        • Me and Muckraker, it seems that the Federal Courts has already addressed this issue. They have found that restricting ownership of a firearm based on age is UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

    • Not necessarily. That misdemeanor charge could very well be thrown out. His attorney did a good job in a pre-trial hearing explaining why it’s a stupidly written law that is too vague to be valid. If you read the Wisconsin statutes, it truly is a mess. I don’t know how it passed the legislature.

      • My biggest fear was the prosecutor’s attempt at making an example of Kyle. Hopefully the prosecutor gets his ass handed to him. Get me on that jury and Kyle walks.

        • Yeah, and this is from the same DA office that did not charge any police for the Blake shooting, which was absolutely the correct decision. Perhaps they are making up for that with this prosecution. Their case is weak and the prosecutor knows its weak. But they’re still rolling the dice because what do they have to lose? It’s sick what is happening to America.

      • What the prosecutor is saying with his underage crap is…If I cannot get him on the high side I’ll get him on the low side…just as long as I get him somewhere.

        The prosecutor’s actions bring light to age and unfortunately for the prosecution that works to sway the jury to consider the age of the accused. Something the jury will weigh a bit per charges on the high side.

        Bottom line…It’s mike nyfong and Duke Lacrosse being replayed.

      • law makers needed to “do something” so they could say they did something.

        badly written laws are the result of legislators trying to get re-elected – restricting freedom but not making the law narrowly tailored to achieve a certain effect without infringing on the rights of all.

    • If you sift through the statutes, you’ll find this charge doesn’t even apply to Rittenhouse. It’s a little convoluted but he’s not guilty if you read the actual definition and linked subsections of the law.

    • There is commentary on that all over the place. If I understand it correctly, he would only be guilty if he had a short barreled rifle or shotgun, or a pistol. Teens routinely carry long guns out in the field, hunting, right? Obviously, they can possess long guns. Or, is there a law that teen hunters must be accompanied by a legal guardian?

      • He was on private property with permission, until the murderous criminals started their assault and attempted murder chasing him off of it.

  3. Questionnaire? Never mind prosecutor zingers. The one question that matters is…Did the wee lad criminally misuse a weapon to defend himself? Answer is…No and Hell No.

    • “BlackLootersMurder demonstration against Kyle!”

      Huh?

      anyway, 150 prospective jurors – only 20 will serve and its unknown which of those 20 will be designated as alternates. Selection process underway right now as I post this.

  4. The deranged punk storm trooper will not be able to avoid the penalty for carrying a weapon illegally because he was underage. His ass is grassed on that one. He probably will be banned for life from ever owning a weapon again but that is irrelevant if he goes to prison for decades.

    Depending on whether the jury is impartial (highly unlikely either way) the prosecution will correctly argue that Rittenhouse went there illegally armed and looking for a fight and if he had not been armed no one would have died that night. The mere presence of a weapon by an unauthorized and clearly underage person was enough to antagonize and enrage and threaten the protestors.

    The defense will portray Rittenhouse as a misunderstood kid who acted in self-defense. If there are witnesses that saw everything Rittenhouse may be in serious trouble if it is proven that he was the aggressor who antagonized the protestors or he may beat the rap if it is proven the protestors were the aggressors. If nether side proves that they were the victims then it will be up to the jury and how prejudiced they are either way.

    Clearly Rittenhouse tried to take the law into his own hands when he was not legally permitted to do so. He did not own the property he was in front of nor was he being requested by the owner to be there so he had no business even being there except to cause more trouble which he clearly did. In short he was a little punk white racist supremacist power mad asshole. He thought he could play storm trooper and get away with it. Well he did not get away with it.

    His mother was clearly unfit to be a mother and bears a large part of the blame. Supposedly this deranged racist bitch even drove him there. She should be prosecuted as an accessory to the killings as well if Rittenhouse is convicted of murder. Without her egging him on and driving him there he would not have been there to commit all the senseless killings.

    Clearly racism was the driving factor behind both his mothers decision to send her son into a very dangerous situation and her son was only to glad to get a chance to kill people that were there protesting another senseless cop killing that never should have happened in the first place.

    Until the U.S. becomes a more civilized country and defeats the Republicans and “cancels unqualified immunity” (the Gestapo is always right) and funds more training for the police the mass murder on average of over 1,000 U.S. Citizens by largely undertrained cops and cops hired who would never have been hired if they had been thoroughly vetted the senseless killing of civilians will only get worse reminding one that history does repeat itself from Nazi Germany down to present day Nazi America where minorities lives are considered cheap and expendable. Just as Hitlers Germany gunned down innocent Jewish people on the streets of Germany so too do the U.S. Gestapo gun downed all minorities on the streets of Capitalvania where again life is considered cheap and expendable and that only ”white lives matter”. That is fact accept it or not.

    • DACIAN, the Dunce, Give it a rest. Your diatribe is nothing more than a Socialist propaganda piece. Again, you ignore the FACT that you Socialists are kin folk to Fascists and Nazis. It’s you ANTIFA and BLM thugs who are the real stormtroopers.
      You have the unmitigated gall to bring up Hitler’s treatment of the Jewish people (not Jews) when you support the PLO terrorists?
      The US is a civilized country. You see, real Americans stand up to tyranny that you Socialists want impose on us. Real Americans do for themselves not expecting the government to support them as you do. Real Americans are for the RULE of LAW a concept which seems to be alien to you and your compadres.
      There you go paying the race card again. Kyle Rittenhouse had every right to defend himself against your ANTIFA and BLM thugs. You have the gall to insult his mother, while you are an enemy of the US and the Constitution. One has to wonder where you where raised and what your parents were like.
      Exercising your right to SELF DEFENSE is not taking the law into your own hands. It is preventing your own death or serious injury which as I’ve stated on many occasions is your absolute right.
      One has to wonder what you would do under similar circumstances as he experienced.
      I’m still waiting for you to exercise your “expertise” (ROFLMAO) on firearms.

      • to Walter Jed Campett of the Beverly Hillbillies

        quote———-It’s you ANTIFA and BLM thugs who are the real stormtroopers.——–quote

        You have got that backwards. Anti-Fa originated on the streets of Germany fighting Hitler’s Nazi’s. U.S. Troops were later known as Anti-FA when they invaded Germany. And U.S. Anti-Fa fought Herr Drumpf’s (Fake 45’s) Storm troopers at Charlottesville. And remember it was your dearly beloved Charlottesville Trumpite Nazi’s that killed and innocent women by running into a crowd with a car.

        quote————You have the unmitigated gall to bring up Hitler’s treatment of the Jewish people (not Jews) when you support the PLO terrorists?—-quote

        Sober up and get off the drugs. I am not for the PLO and never have been nor have I ever even mentioned them on T Tag.

        quote————-Real Americans are for the RULE of LAW a concept which seems to be alien to you and your compadres.———–quote

        Again you have got that backwards it was you and the Trumpite Jackbooted Storm Troopers that tried to destroy our democratic way of life and take over the government by force on Jan. 6th.

        quote———–There you go paying the race card again. Kyle Rittenhouse had every right to defend himself against your ANTIFA and BLM thugs.———quote

        He was underage and carrying an illegal assault rifle that was purchased in a “straw man” sale. He had no right to be there that night. He started a confrontation which resulted in death of two people and severe wounding of another. If he had not brought a gun there no one would have been killed.

        quote————I’m still waiting for you to exercise your “expertise” (ROFLMAO) on firearms.———-quote

        You have already received it numerous times when I posted critiques on firearms. Two of them alone in the last several weeks. I have challenged you to do the same and you have run away and hide under your bed. I have repeatedly challenged you to post a firearms critique. Since you are obviously unqualified to post such a critique it is you who know little about firearms.

        You must enjoy being humiliated. Quit now you are making a fool of yourself. You are out of your league.

        • Dacian, the DUNCE, It seems you have again tried to rewrite history.
          ANTIFA did not originate in Germany during the Nazi era as you allege. It dates back to the 1990’s when your buddies opposed the international meetings held in various cities.
          You claim to be anti-fascist” when in fact you use the tactics of your own fascist kin. Remember Giovani Gentile, Mussolini’s Manifest author and a favorite of your other buddy, Adolph Hitler.
          IF Kyle Rittenhouse was to be charged, he would have to be charged under FEDERAL LAW. But you see the Federal Courts have already addressed this issue and declared that such laws are UNCONTITUTIONAL which I have previously pointed out.
          Your critiques of firearms are as bogus as your socialist ideology. Again, I ask you what the the firing sequence of a cartridge?
          Take you time…
          You still haven’t answered that one.
          AGAIN, it is I who have humiliated you. Not the other way around. You are right. I am out of your league. I haven’t played in the Little League in about 60 yrs.

        • To Walter Jed Camplett of the Beverly Hillbillies

          quote————-Again, I ask you what the the firing sequence of a cartridge?———–quote

          You never before asked me that question and you were not supposed to anyway. Remember I challenged you to do a firearms critique and you have been too terrified to do it. Again I have done it already on this forum and you have not.

          Sorry you are not squirming out of the challenge. You claimed I knew nothing about firearms yet you ignored by critiques and have made none of your own because , once again you are not qualified to even attempt it.

          This was really easy I burned your ass without you even having to do a critique to get your ass burned by me. I am still waiting for you to do one anyway.

        • Dacian, the DUNCE, you are not only a dunce but you are a lying Socialist. The question was asked and you still haven’t answered it.
          The only ass that is “burning” is yours.
          AGAIN, what is the firing sequence of a bullet? If you know so much about firearms, answer the question. The only thing you are expert at is prevarication.
          What you know about firearms couldn’t cover the bottom of a thimble.
          LIAR, LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE!

    • This guy does this to get under your skin. Whenever I see Mr. Newman’s face I scroll down to the next comment. In time, if he cant get a rise out of you, he will go away. His reward is your comments.

      • The people here will never stop feeding the trolls. Which is why the trolls will never leave.

        It really does debase the comment section but… whatever.

        My general rule of thumb is to skip the troll comments and those that are replies to the troll comments. This makes threads considerably shorter and more enjoyable.

        • That is the “rule of scrolling finger” I’ve used here for years.
          It works really well for me as well.

        • “Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire.”

          A common adage when dealing with both the propagandist and the demagogue. However, it is entirely ineffective in producing the desired outcome and you are playing directly into their hand because you’re assisting the bad actor in the 3rd outcome they desire.

          In many regards, they can’t do it without your help. Help they’ve convinced you to unwittingly give them.

          But hey, you do you. The fact that you undermine your own position is, likely, irrelevant as long as you feel better. Which is the bait in the trap into which you’ve walked.

          But again, you do you. If assisting the anti-gunners helps you sleep at night, go right ahead.

        • strych9, Hey if you want to be bullied by these Socialists, that’s on you, little fella. I would rather stand on my feet and fight these traitors then knuckle under.
          It most certainly is very effective. It’s people like you who are feeding them and by going unanswered, you give credence to their diatribe.
          I tend to disagree, it’s you namby pambies that are assisting the anti-gun radicals.

    • Dacian said,
      “Of course no documentation only a wild claim”

      And
      “Again cite documentations. They do not , I wonder why?”

      Why? Well stop wondering. It is because your reading comprehension is at a second (maybe first) degree level.

      Really sorry you failed basic reading and don’t understand how to read the full report that includes ….. 134 footnotes!

      But why would you? As a mentally unbalanced leftist (ask me Miner49er all about it) you can simply scream and attempt to project your racism upon others. Again, point of fact, you are the racist.

      Here is the page on their website you either ignored, or because of your current reading comprehension level could not locate.

      https://www.fairus.org/sites/default/files/2017-09/Fiscal-Burden-of-Illegal-Immigration-2017.pdf

      It has 134 endnotes you can click at (but will be unlikely to understand), like this one; Joel Gherke, “Report: U.S. Spent $1.87 Billion to Incarcerate Illegal-Immigrant Criminals in 2014,”
      National Review, July 28, 2015

      Happy reading….. your “tear it apart” skills is nonexistent… and seek some professional help ASAP!

      • Illegal Immigration Cost the U.S. over $115 Billion a year.

        That was in 2017 what is the true cost today $150 Billion? $250 Billion?

      • Fake Miner49

        I looked up your link. Its from a Neo-Nazi Far right group that hates all immigrants and boldly states its out to prevent all immigration. Their credentials are nor more credible than what Hitler’s Nazi’s said about the Jews during WWII. Fake Miner49 they are your kind of sick people.

        As the FBI has stated. The greatest danger to the U.S. and its democracy are people like you from the Far Right and the Jan 6th beer hall putsch by your Lord God Herr Drumpf certainly proved the FBI right beyond all doubt.

        • DACIAN, the DUNCE, Here we go again with that nonsense about “Neo-Nazi Far Right group”. Isn’t that one of your stock retorts? The FBI ? The same guys who instigated the Jan 6th incident. Tell the truth, you don’t want “democracy”. What you want is your dictatorship of the proletariat, in other words Communism. The FBI couldn’t find a fart in a telephone booth with a fart detector.

    • “The deranged punk storm trooper…”

      You’re projecting there again, bub. Your posts often remind me of a manure lagoon. Dig through the crust, and you’ll find out why they’re built with the intention of crusting over.

      • His antifa and blm comrades were there to vigorously protest, redistribute wealth, and engage in urban renewal (aka rioting, looting, and arson).

      • Oh great idea Herr Hauptman. Lets do away with automobile safety glass, anti-lock breaks, back up safeties on lawn mowers, breaks on chain saws, child proof safety caps on medicine and every other safety device that has saved thousands of American lives every year since they were adopted. I would suggest you see a psychiatrist, you have problems.

    • for the record, Kyle was attacked by the Roseybum freak specifically because Kyle extinguished a fire that Roseybum helped to start, with the intention of setting a gas station afire

      there were no misundertandings, Roseybum intended arson, and Kyle put Rosey’s fire out

    • Yeah, it’s a shame Kyle killed all those black people, ain’t it? Oh, wait, he didn’t kill black people! Instead, he shot some privileged white liberals. Give the boy a medal, pat him on the head, maybe give him a scholarship, and send him on his way.

  5. FREE KYLE & LETS GO BRANDON!
    Absolutely! I was at a bar last night watching the World Series and when we got to God Bless America, I stood and removed my hat (very drunk, so I was being a little emotional) and as the song was finishing someone yelled “Let’s Go Brandon!” and the whole bar started chanting it. This is a vacation destination with people from all over the country. It was gorgeous!

  6. I do not trust the criminal justice system to actually render justice in this or any other case.

    A fantastic criminal lawyer – a defense lawyer who started out as a prosecutor – once told me that his job was to hold up a steaming bag of sh!t and convince the jury that it was gold. That’s a very good synopsis of a trial, with both sides trying to convince a jury that the sh!t they’re laying down is really gold.

    Justice isn’t even an afterthought.

  7. I do not see how Kyle can get a fair trial. All the evidence shows clearly that this was self defense. he should never ever been charged in the first place. This crap is what fuels the fire of revolution.

  8. My guess remains as it was last year. The guy probably walks on most of the charges but they get him on the underage possession thing unless he has a hunter’s safety cert. He’ll pay a fine and maybe a bit of jail time.

    His real problems start when this is over.

    But then… honestly, at this point I’ve kinda stopped caring about this case. In the bigger scheme of things this specific situation is of little import other than to those directly involved.

    • “He’ll pay a fine and maybe a bit of jail time.”

      He spent a number of months in jail while bail was being raised, so time served is a possibility.

      “His real problems start when this is over.”

      Yeah, that’s gonna be a bit of a problem like Zimmerman had after his acquittal. I think he’ll have a support network willing to help him out, unlike the lack of substantial support Zimmerman had.

      Be interesting to watch as it plays out…

      • That and I wouldn’t be surprised if they come back at him with a separate charge or separate set of charges that they’re more confident in.

        As others have noted there is the potential for a “straw purchase” charge, which IIRC, Wisconsin does have on their books as a state offense classed as a felony.

        I don’t recall that he’s been charged with that but maybe that’s changed since I stopped following the case closely.

        • Rittenhouse did engage in a criminal conspiracy to execute a strawman purchase of the AR 15, this is a federal felony that he is clearly guilty of and it is unlikely he will be able to avoid a prison sentence regarding this infraction as humans were later terminated through the use of this illegally procured weapon.

        • Minr49er, If Rittenhouse is “guilty” of a “straw buy”, then that is a FEDERAL charge, and has no bearing on the State charges.

  9. The kid is innocent of murder. Remember, justification of lethal gun is decided in a moment by moment review of the events. It does not matter that the idiot child was where he should not have been doing what he had no business or good judgement to be doing. At the moment of shooting, he was in obvious and very reasonable fear for his life.

    I’d never trust that little shit with a gun, but he did not murder anyone or incite anyone to attack him.

    He is innocent, but dumb as a fucking stump.

  10. It will all hinge on the initial shooting, that is the essential question.

    If he truly was firing in self-defense, then the subsequent attacks were unjustified.

    If Rittenhouse was not justified in his initial shooting, then the additional shootings were just a fleeing felon killing those who were attempting to apprehend him.

    “Kenosha County Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger delivered the prosecution’s opening statement and said the evidence will show that Rittenhouse chased down Rosenbaum and shot him four times, including a fatal shot to the back.“

    Some would say it may be difficult to justify a shooting as self-defense when the victim was shot in the back.

    • “Some would say it may be difficult to justify a shooting as self-defense when the victim was shot in the back.”
      Hey, police do it all the time and never get charged (or in the extremely rare instance where they’re charged, never get convicted). Why should there be one rule for police, and another rule for law-abiding citizens?
      Oh wait, I think I just answered my own question — police aren’t law-abiding. It’s been proven time and time again that concealed-carry permit holders commit crimes at a lower rate than police do.

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