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Actor Ricky Schroder on Tuesday defended his role in aiding Kenosha shooting suspect Kyle Rittenhouse’s release from prison on a $2 million bond, saying that the 17-year-old who shot and killed two and injured one protester this summer in Kenosha, Wisconsin was “there to defend property from chaos.”
Rittenhouse was released from a Wisconsin jail Friday afternoon after his attorneys posted the $2 million in bail—collected through donations, including money from Schroder and My Pillow inventor Mike Lindell.
“It made me mad,” Schroder, a staunch gun rights advocate, told the New York Post. “This boy is innocent and he will be proven innocent. I did what any father should’ve done, and that’s get a kid out of jail that doesn’t deserve to be there.”
Schroder, a child star of the hit sitcom “Silver Spoons” and later on “NYPD Blue” in the '90s, told the tabloid that he’ll be donating “hundreds of thousands” of dollars for the bond and the accused murderer’s defense.
“He wasn’t there to stop the protests,” Schroder said. “He was there to defend property from chaos.”
Rittenhouse had been in custody for the last two-and-a-half months on murder charges after shooting three men with an AR-15 style rifle during a Kenosha protest on Aug. 25—killing Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and injuring 26-year-old Gaige Grosskreutz.
The protesters had gathered to demonstrate their outrage over the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man who had been shot multiple times by white police officer Rusten Sheskey days earlier. Blake survived the shooting but has been left paralyzed.
That night, Rittenhouse had aligned himself with a group of armed militia who said their goal was to protect life and property during the protests, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported shortly after his arrest. His lawyer has claimed he acted in self-defense.
Speaking to the Post, Schroder related his own feelings of mistreatment by the media following his 2019 arrest for allegedly punching his girlfriend. The case against was ultimately dismissed.
“It sucked because everybody thought I was a woman beater, and I’m not a woman beater,” he told the newspaper. “I was tried and convicted in the court of the media. But you have to understand, that’s only my reputation that was being destroyed.
“This was Kyle’s life being destroyed,” Schroder added. “This is his freedom at risk. It infuriated me to see an innocent 17-year-old young man being tried and found guilty before trial.”
The actor faced swift backlash after it was learned that he donated to Rittenhouse’s bail fund, and told the newspaper that there were even threats made by people saying they’d come to his home. Undeterred, Schroder doubled down on his support for the accused killer.
“I’m in this in the long haul for this kid, until his name’s cleared,” he told the Post. “This is a clear case of self-defense.”
Rittenhouse’s trial is set for Aug. 25.
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