KENOSHA — Kyle Rittenhouse, an Illinois teen, is facing first-degree homicide charges for killing two men in Kenosha this past week when he armed himself with an AR-15 during protests.
That wasn't his first time in Kenosha. Less than a week prior to the shootings, Rittenhouse received violations for operating without a valid license and for speeding 20-24 mph over the speed limit in Kenosha County, court records show.
And multiple videos shared on social media reportedly show a teen identified as Rittenhouse being involved in a fight in Downtown Kenosha on July 1.
One of the men who shot one of the videos confirmed its authenticity to The Journal Times and, in the video, the teen throwing the punches is wearing the same red, white and blue crocs Rittenhouse is shown wearing in a photo that was posted on Facebook of himself holding a gun. Facebook has since blocked all searches on its site for the name "Kyle Rittenhouse," but videos and posts can still be searched on Twitter.
In the videos, two females are shown arguing in a parking lot in Downtown Kenosha.
In the the first video, the teen identified as Rittenhouse and several other young males are shown watching two females (ages unknown) argue. One of the females, wearing a white tank top and short shorts, says that another female, wearing slippers and sweatpants, touched her.
Moments later, the argument escalates as the teen identified as Rittenhouse and another male begin exchanging words with the female in sweatpants. Seconds after that, the female in sweatpants starts scuffling with a third female.
Rittenhouse then appears to land several punches on the female in sweatpants as another male nearby tries unsuccessfully to hold Rittenhouse back.
At that point, the males filming — identified on Facebook as Reese Granville and Cj Wakefield, both of Kenosha — and several others jump out of their respective vehicles and run in.
Granville confirmed to The Journal Times the date and location of the fight. Videos on Facebook show that Wakefield also was at protests in Downtown Kenosha this past week. Both Granville and Wakefield have said, based on what they witnessed and recorded, that the person throwing punches in their videos is Rittenhouse.
The second video shows Rittenhouse, wearing red-white-and-blue trunks and shoes, being kicked several times. One male can be heard saying “Do not put your hands on a female (expletive)” moments before the fight breaks up. A third video, shared by Granville, has little visual information (since the phone's camera appears to be covered) but includes audio of a woman yelling, "Hey stop!"
Granville told The Journal Times in a message that he doesn't know what led to the fight. He said he was just driving past, saw what was going on and started recording.
According to Lin Wood, who has identified himself as Rittenhouse’s defense attorney: Rittenhouse acquired the firearm that was used to kill Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum from a friend in Wisconsin, and the firearm never crossed state lines.
When you start manufacturing facts to support false accusations, you get into trouble under the law of defamation. Kyle did not carry a gun across state lines. The gun belonged to his friend, a Wisconsin resident. The gun never left the State of Wisconsin.— Lin Wood (@LLinWood) August 28, 2020
Truth always prevails. https://t.co/iDbsykaVvY
Wood is arguing that Rittenhouse acted in self-defense. Videos taken Tuesday show that both Huber and Rosenbaum were running at Rittenhouse when the fatal shots were fired; after Rosenbaum had already been shot, Huber had been attempting to hit Rittenhouse with a skateboard when he was shot in the chest.
Online court records do not show Wood or any other attorney representing Rittenhouse, as of 10:55 a.m. Saturday. Wood's office did not immediately reply to a request for comment Saturday.
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