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Juror dismissed at Kyle Rittenhouse trial for telling a joke demonstrating possible ‘bias’ in the case

A juror in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse was dismissed on Thursday after making a joke that suggested he may have a bias that made him unfit to serve on the case.

The Rittenhouse trial began last Monday. By Thursday, one juror had been dismissed after making a joke that officials in the case deemed inappropriate and grounds for removal from the case. 

While a bailiff was walking him to his car outside the Wisconsin courthouse, the former juror allegedly joked, “Why did the Kenosha police shoot Jacob Blake 7 times? Because they ran out of bullets,” CBS Chicago reported. The “joke” was not taken lightly and was brought to the attention of Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder. 

Juror no. 7, who made the joke, admitted to Schroeder that he had made the joke but refused  to repeat it to him. Schroeder told the juror, “I’ve talked quite a bit about public confidence in the outcome of the trial. It’s clear that the appearance of bias is present and it would seriously undermine the outcome of the case.” 

In addition, Thomas Binger, the Kenosha County Assistant District Attorney, took issue as well, saying “The joke is in bad taste, there are a plethora of bad jokes out there with everything to do with all this, this is one of them. But I think the rest of this joke, as it were, suggests some sort of racial bias which I think comes into play.”

During questioning, the juror seemed uncomfortable. He was described as middle aged and wearing a multi-colored face mask by a pool reporter in court. He claimed, “My feelings is, it was nothing to do with the case. It was nothing to do with Kyle and his charges.” The defense and prosecution were in agreement that dismissing the juror was the right move. 

The case is regarding Kyle Rittenhouse who shot three men in Kenosha during a period of riots and unrest after the shooting of Jacob Blake. Blake was shot in the back by a police officer seven times, resulting in being paralyzed from the waist down. Riots ensued afterwards as Blake is Black and the officer who shot him was white.

Rittenhouse traveled to Kenosha from his home in Illinois to be a part of everything going on in Kenosha. He claimed that he was acting in self-defense when he fired at the three men, two of which were killed. Prior to shooting, Rittenhouse had hopes of becoming a police officer.

ARTICLE: RITA VOGT

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: WASHINGTON POST

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