Kyle Rittenhouse Trial: Lawyers Can’t Call 2 People Killed “Victims”

In Summary

Judge Bruce Schroeder said in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial, the word “victim” is too “loaded.”   

The two men reportedly shot by Kyle Rittenhouse in Kenosha, Wis., last year during protests following the Jacob Blake shooting can’t be called “victims,” a Wisconsin judge said Monday. 

Judge Bruce Schroeder said that referring to the men, Anthony M. Huber, 26, and Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, as “victims” may be too “loaded,” but they could be referred to as “rioters” and “looters” by Rittenhouse’s defense team. 

“Let the evidence show what the evidence shows,” Judge Schroeder said. “And if the evidence shows that any or more than one of these people were engaged in arson, rioting, or looting — then I’m not going to tell the defense they can’t call them that.” 

On the night of August 25, 2020, Rittenhouse, then 17 years old, armed himself with an AR-15 style rifle and drove down from Antioch, Ill. to Kenosha, to protect businesses during the protest. 

In addition to allegedly killing Rosenbaum and Huber, Rittenhouse is also accused of shooting and injuring 26-year-old Gaige Grosskreutz. He was charged with felony homicide and felony attempted homicide. 

Related: Several Motions in Kyle Rittenhouse Trial Denied at Latest Hearing 

Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger believes Schroeder is encouraging a “double standard” due to his longstanding rule of referring to people as “victims” at trial. 

RelatedFamily of Man Killed by Kyle Rittenhouse in Kenosha Files Lawsuit Against City 

“If I were to count the number of times that you’ve admonished me not to call someone a victim during a trial, it would be in the thousands,” Binger said. 

During the night of the shooting, defense attorney Corey Chirafisi said Rittenhouse was chased, attacked by protesters, kicked in the face and beaten with a skateboard. When Rittenhouse fired his weapon at people, Chirafisi said his client acted in self-defense.   

Rosenbaum, Huber and Grosskreutzand hundreds of others were protesting the shooting of Blake in Kenosha, who was shot multiple times by police while attempting to enter his car. Blake survived the seven shots to his back from police officer Rusten Sheskey, but the shooting left him paralyzed from the waist down.  

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