More details have emerged concerning the arrest of Kyle Rittenhouse after two people were killed and one other wounded during violence in Kenosha, WI on Tuesday evening. The arrest was made in Illinois, where Rittenhouse had returned after the incident. Rittenhouse lives in Antioch, IL which is around 15 miles south of Kenosha.
Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old white man, was identified in a police complaint as a fugitive from justice wanted for first-degree intentional homicide. The Chicago Tribune reported that Antioch, IL Police Commander Norman Johnson confirmed that Rittenhouse was charged as an adult. Rittenhouse is currently being held in Hulse Juvenile Detention Center without bail. He has been assigned a public defender. A hearing will be held on Friday on Rittenhouse’s extradition to Wisconsin.
A press conference was held on Wednesday afternoon by Kenosha County law enforcement officials. Few details emerged about the actual shooting and the names of the shooting victims were not publicly released. Sheriff Beth mentioned that he believed Rittenhouse to be among a group of citizens that had asked the Sheriff to be deputized hours before the shooting occurred. Cellphone video of the incident showed the suspect, armed with a rifle, walking down the street after the shootings with his hands in the air. Numerous police officers are seen going past him in the direction of the shooting. According to CBS 58 Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth explained why Rittenhouse was not detained on the scene. “There’s screaming, there’s hollering, there’s squad cars running, chanting, there’s BearCats, I don’t know where it was, but if the officer happened to be in the car, the radio traffic was non stop…and there were people running all over the place,” Sheriff Beth said. “In situations that are high stress you have such an incredible tunnel vision.”
Video footage of an interview with Rittenhouse was posted on Twitter by a Daily Caller reporter. In the video a man appearing to be Rittenhouse holds a rifle while answering the reporter’s question about why he was at the protest. “So people are getting injured and our job is to protect this business,” the man says. “And part of my job is to also help people. If there is somebody hurt I’m running into harms way. That’s why I have my rifle because I need to protect myself obviously. I also have my med kit.”
WBEZ Chicago reported that around an hour before the shootings took place one of the shooting victims was caught on video yelling at a group of armed citizens including Rittenhouse. “Don’t point no mother—— gun at me homie,’ he said, then “Shoot me n—-! Shoot me n—–!”Rittenhouse was a strong supporter of the police. He participated in a youth police cadet program in Lake County, Il. His Facebook page contained many publicly-viewable posts in support of the police. His profile picture showed him in front of a “thin blue line” American flag and the photo was circled with the caption ““Duty. Honor. Courage. Blue Lives Matter.” Rittenhouse’s Facebook page was removed from the social media site on Wednesday