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Crime: Judge in Kyle Rittenhouse trial boots juror for 'joke' about police shooting of Jacob Blake

Stern judge among key players in Kyle Rittenhouse trial

  Stern judge among key players in Kyle Rittenhouse trial MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Jury selection starts Monday in Kenosha, Wisconsin, in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, an Illinois man accused of killing two people at a police brutality protest last year. Rittenhouse's trial is expected to last at least two weeks. Here's a look at the key players: THE DEFENDANT Rittenhouse, of Antioch, Illinois, was 17 at the time of the shootings. He was an ardent police supporter before the incidents, serving as a youth cadet in the Grayslake Police Department and posting photos of himself brandishing a rifle above the caption “Blue Lives Matter.” He worked part-time as a YMCA lifeguard in Lindenhurst, Illinois, before he was furloughed in March 2020.

KENOSHA, Wisc. — On day four of the homicide trial for Kyle Rittenhouse, the judge dismissed a male juror who made a joke to a sheriff’s deputy about the police shooting of Jacob Blake and the number of times he was shot.

A Kenosha police officer shot Blake seven times in August 2020, which left him paralyzed. The shooting was captured on video that sparked protests and led to the deaths of the two men, whom Rittenhouse is charged with killing. Rittenhouse also wounded a third person during those protests last year.

Judge Bruce Schroeder talks about the juror who attempted to tell a joke to a bailiff during Kyle Rittenhouse's trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 4, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse is accused of shooting three demonstrators, killing two of them, during a night of unrest that erupted in Kenosha after a police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back while being arrested in August 2020. Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, was 17 at the time of the shooting and armed with an assault rifle. He faces counts of felony homicide and felony attempted homicide. © Sean Krajacic/The Kenosha News/Pool Judge Bruce Schroeder talks about the juror who attempted to tell a joke to a bailiff during Kyle Rittenhouse's trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 4, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse is accused of shooting three demonstrators, killing two of them, during a night of unrest that erupted in Kenosha after a police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back while being arrested in August 2020. Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, was 17 at the time of the shooting and armed with an assault rifle. He faces counts of felony homicide and felony attempted homicide.

On Thursday when Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder brought the juror to the courtroom to ask him about the joke, the man would not repeat it but said he didn’t think it had “anything to do with” Rittenhouse's trial.

Kyle Rittenhouse trial starts Monday in Kenosha, Wisconsin: What to know about the case

  Kyle Rittenhouse trial starts Monday in Kenosha, Wisconsin: What to know about the case Kyle Rittenhouse goes on trial Monday in the shooting of three people during a protest against police brutality after the shooting of Jacob Blake.Since then, the case and its characters have provided a constant stream of intrigue, outrage and propaganda, in both mainstream and niche conservative media outlets where he has occasionally been portrayed as a patriot and symbol of gun rights as well as a self-defense hero and boy-next-door.

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Schroeder has talked repeatedly about the importance that the public perceives the trial as fair.

“It’s clear that the appearance of bias is present and it would seriously undermine the outcome of the case,” he said.

At the very least, Schroeder said, “it was bad judgment to tell a joke of that nature.” The juror made the comments Wednesday and Schroeder had said he'd consider it the next morning.

With the juror’s dismissal, 19 jurors remain. Only 12 will deliberate.

Meanwhile Thursday morning, questioning continued of Martin Howard, a Kenosha police detective who is a lead investigator on the case. Both prosecutors and defense attorneys have focused heavily on videos from bystanders as they have questioned Howard.

The Risky Move That Could Save Kyle Rittenhouse—or Doom Him

  The Risky Move That Could Save Kyle Rittenhouse—or Doom Him Kyle Rittenhouse’s highly anticipated and politically polarizing murder trial began on Monday. And perhaps the biggest question looming over the proceedings—which will inevitably feature caricatures of unhinged racial-justice activists and harrowing stories of loved ones lost to a rogue gunman—is what the teenager himself might say to jurors deciding his fate. Rittenhouse, 18, is accused of murdering two people and injuring a third on Aug. 25, 2020, amid unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, after the police shooting of Jacob Blake.

This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Judge in Kyle Rittenhouse trial boots juror for 'joke' about police shooting of Jacob Blake

EXPLAINER: Did Rittenhouse lawyers do enough to prevail? .
KENOSHA, Wisconsin (AP) — When Kyle Rittenhouse took the stand to testify about his actions the night he shot three men on the streets of Kenosha — sobbing and seemingly unable to continue as he approached the critical moment where he shot the first man — it was one of the most compelling moments in his two-week murder trial. It might have been the most effective part of his three-day defense, too, potentially swaying any jurors inclined toward sympathy for the 18-year-old who has claimed self-defense in the shootings that left two of the men dead.

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