The judge in Kyle Rittenhouse’s murder trial has dismissed one of six charges against Rittenhouse and ruled that Rittenhouse should not face the charge of illegal possession.
Rittenhouse shot three men — killing two of them and injuring the third — during an uprising against police brutality in Kenosha, Wisconsin last year. He is also being charged with murder. additional chargesIncluding the violation of a state statute that bars people under the age of 18 from possessing a dangerous weapon.
Rittenhouse is now 18 years old. He was 17 at time of shootings. On the evening August 25, 2020, Rittenhouse, now 18, traveled from Antioch in Illinois to the protests at Kenosha with a military-style gun. Wisconsin law states thatExcept when they are hunting wildlife, minors cannot have deadly weapons.
Judge Bruce Schroeder is presided over the trial and has decided to dismiss misdemeanor weapons charges. justifying this move by saying that he has a “big problem” with the way the statute was written. This comment suggests that his decision to dismiss the charge was based on personal opinion rather than legal reasoning.
Schroeder’s decision to remove the charge took place shortly before closing arguments.
The judge stated that he would have thought about removing the charge if Rittenhouse’s rifle used in the shootings had an extended barrel length. However, Wisconsin law does not define what constitutes a “dangerous weapon”This is based on the rifle’s length.
The weapon Rittenhouse used to shoot the three men was obtained in what many would consider a “straw purchase” arms sale. Dominick Black, a friend and fellow 18-year-old Rittenhouse, was the victim. testified earlier in the trialRittenhouse paid him to purchase the rifle from a Wisconsin hardware store back in May 2020. The gun was stored at Black’s family residence, where his dad eventually moved the rifle from the garage, where it was originally stored, into the house.
Rittenhouse was present on the day of shootings took the rifle from the Black home without asking for permission, The New York Times reported.
Throughout the trial, Judge Schroeder has repeatedly revealed his biases. Last week, for instance, He made a racist joke of Asians ahead of a lunchtime recess, saying he hoped that “Asian food isn’t coming” from “one of those long boats from Long Beach Harbor.”
Late last month, Schroeder prohibited prosecutors using the word “victim” to describe the individuals Rittenhouse shot, describing it as a “loaded” word. But Schroeder said he’d allow the defense to describe Rittenhouse’s victims as “looters,” “arsonists” and “rioters” — despite no evidence that any of them had engaged in any criminal activity before being injured or killed.
Shroeder also refused to hear evidence surrounding Rittenhouse’s connection to the Proud Boys, a far right white supremacist group known for instigating violence at protests. Shortly after posting bail, Rittenhouse posed for photographs with the group’s members at a bar, where he flashed a “white power” hand symbol at the camera.