Kyle Rittenhouse, the 18-year-old charged with killing two protesters and injuring a third during demonstrations against police violence over the summer in Kenosha, Wisconsin, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges related to the shootings.
Rittenhouse appeared for a virtual arraignment in Kenosha County, where he faces several charges, including attempted and intentional homicide. He is expected to appear next in court March 10 for a pretrial hearing.
The Illinois teenager traveled to Kenosha on Aug. 25, two days after a police officer was seen shooting Jacob Blake, a Black man, seven times in the back in a video posted on social media. The shooting left Blake paralyzed and added fuel to protests nationwide that had been earlier sparked by the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police.
Rittenhouse and his attorney have argued that he acted in self-defense on Aug. 25 when he shot and killed Anthony Huber, 26, and Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and shot and injured Gaige Grosskreutz, 26. Rittenhouse, then 17, turned himself in to police in Antioch, Illinois, one day after the shooting.
Rittenhouse’s arrest and subsequent prosecution has become a rallying point for some on the right who frame the 18-year-old as a patriot who took up arms to protect people and property. Others see him as a domestic terrorist whose presence with a rifle incited protesters.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Cox Media Group