The police department in the Wisconsin city of Kenosha is facing fresh legal action after being accused of “deputizing” a group of militia vigilantes during anti-police brutality protests last year in which 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse killed two people.
Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, is due to stand trial on Nov. 1, accused of wounding Gaige Grosskreutz, who filed the suit, and killing two other people who were protesting the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Aug. 25, 2020. Rittenhouse has pleaded not guilty to charges including homicide and attempted homicide and maintains he fired in self-defense.
Grosskreutz, 27 has accused a law enforcement officer in his suit, filed in a Milwaukee federal court on Thursday, of saying to a group of armed males including Rittenhouse during unrest over Blake’s shooting: “We appreciate you guys — we really do.”
“Kenosha law enforcement officers and white nationalist militia persons discussed and coordinated strategy,” alleges the suit, which seeks a jury trial along with unspecified compensatory and punitive damages, and “injunctive relief to prevent future violations of the law.” The lawsuit names the City of Kenosha, Kenosha County and individual officers including the city’s police chief and the county sheriff.
An attorney representing Kenosha County and Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth told CNN Grosskreutz’s allegations were “false” and they would file a motion seeking dismissal of the case. “The lawsuit also fails to acknowledge that Mr. Grosskreutz was himself armed with a firearm when he was shot and Mr. Grosskreutz failed to file this lawsuit against the person who actually shot him,” added the attorney, Samuel Hall.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: AXIOS
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