October 23, 2021
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Opinion

National Recap: Kenosha shooter released on $2 million bail

Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenager charged with fatally shooting two protesters during the Jacob Blake protests in August, was released on bail Nov. 20. 

Mike Lindell, MyPillow Inc. founder and CEO, and Ricky Schroder, former “Silver Spoons” child actor, played key roles in helping Rittenhouse come up with the $2 million bail, according to Rittenhouse’s defense attorney Lin Wood. Schroder is known for his conservative views, and Lindell is a supporter of President Donald Trump. 

The protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, took place after the shooting of Blake, a Black man, by white police officers Aug. 23. Blake being shot ignited days of violent protests in Kenosha. Even the Milwaukee Bucks led a brief NBA walkout in late August to protest Blake’s shooting. 

Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old from Antioch, Illinois, was charged with first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide and attempted first-degree intentional homicide among other charges in connection with the deaths of protestors Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber on Aug. 25. Rittenhouse said that he shot them in self-defense. 

Rittenhouse said that he was at the protests in Kenosha, armed with an AR-15 and carrying medical supplies to protect local businesses from looting and help to provide first aid, according to NBC. In an interview with the Washington Post, Rittenhouse said he used money from a coronavirus stimulus check to buy the AR-15 with the help of a 19-year-old friend.

Rittenhouse made it clear that he had no regrets arming himself with an AR-15. 

“No, I don’t regret it,” he said in an interview. “I would have died that night if I didn’t. I feel like I had to protect myself.” 

Rittenhouse said that he was afraid he would spend the rest of his life in prison, Rittenhouse’s friend told police in a recorded interview that CNN obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

Kenosha County Commissioner Loren Keating said at the bond hearing earlier this month that the court considered Rittenhouse a flight risk because he could face a life sentence or serve a significant amount of time in prison if convicted.

 

John Turner can be reached at jturner3@ithaca.edu