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Kyle Rittenhouse’s defense will seemingly plan to argue that the teen was acting in self defense when he shot three people at a Black Lives Matters protest last year.
A use-of-force expert, typically used for police officers following a shooting in the line of duty, testified on Rittenhouse’s behalf for hours on Tuesday during a pre-trial hearing, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. Kenosha County Circuit Court Judge Bruce E. Schroeder listened to John Black detail the moments that led up to the Aug. 25 2020 shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin during Tuesday’s Daubert hearing. A Daubert hearing is held to assess whether or not an expert's opinions are fit for trial and whether or not they are based on valid methods that have gained acceptance in their field.
Rittenhouse is accused of opening fire on three people, killing two, during unrest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake. Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, Anthony Huber, 26, were killed and Gaige Grosskreutz was injured during the incident.
On Tuesday, Black argued that video shows that Rosenbaum chased Rittenhouse and tried to grab his gun away, WQAD reports. He also testified that video shows that Huber attacked Rittenhouse with a skateboard before also trying to grab away his gun. He claimed the footage shows that Grosskreutz also attacked Rittenhouse by running at him with a gun in his hand.
“A citizen in that position, given those indicators, would it be reasonable for them to believe they were about to be assaulted?” Black said. “I would argue yes."
Rittenhouse's lead attorney, Mark Richards, is hoping that Schroeder will let Black testify at the trial. Tuesday's four-hour hearing gave insight into what angle Rittenhouse's defense team plans to use during his trial.
Schroeder will soon hear testimony from a prosecution expert on the use of force and then he will decide whether or not to allow Black's testimony at trial during an Oct. 25 hearing.
Rittenhouse faces multiple charges, including murder, attempted murder and being a minor in possession of a firearm. The controversial shooting has drawn support for the teen among conservatives who have embraced him as patriot. The teen's family has even created “Free Kyle” merchandise to raise money for his defense, Kenosha News reported last year.
His trial is scheduled to start on Nov. 1.
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