KENOSHA, Wis. — Kyle Rittenhouse appeared to break down and collapse onto his defense team on Friday after a jury found him not guilty on all counts in his murder trial connected to the 2020 Kenosha protest shootings.
Rittenhouse was acquitted of all charges after pleading self-defense, saying the men attacked him.
As the jury read the not guilty verdict, Rittenhouse appeared to break down. The 18-year-old could have gotten life in prison if he was found guilty of the most serious charge against him.
Rittenhouse was charged with homicide, attempted homicide and recklessly endangering safety for killing two men and wounding a third with an AR-style semi-automatic rifle.
The August 2020 shootings in Kenosha, Wisconsin, became a flashpoint in the nation’s debate over guns, vigilantism and racial injustice.
The shootings took place during a night of protests over police violence against Black people in the tumultuous summer of 2020. Rittenhouse is white, as were those he shot.
As he dismissed the jurors who sat in judgment in the politically combustible case, Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder assured them the court would take “every measure” to keep them safe.