How many Firearms News readers were surprised when they heard the news that a man being beaten down in the streets of Kenosha, Wisconsin, by “peaceful protestors” Tuesday night shot back, killing two of his assailants and wounding another?
I’m betting the answer is not very many.
The details were hard to piece together, but watching a wide variety of videos posted on YouTube and Twitter after the event gives some pretty good indications of what happened. Sure, there are some holes, but many parts are easy to see with your own eyes.
From a variety of reports, it seems that 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse was armed with an AR-15 and was guarding a car lot in Kenosha near where the protests were occurring. When protesters, after verbally abusing him, began trying to burn some of the cars—which changed their status from protesters to rioters—Rittenhouse apparently tried to stop them.
At least one of them had a Molotov cocktail, and it appears that a rioter, later identified as Joseph D. Rosenbaum, threw it at him, and Rittenhouse fled. A video shows him running down the street past more protesters, apparently trying to escape. Rosenbaum is seen chasing closely behind Rittenhouse, throwing objects at him as they run. At the corner of the frame, you can see Rittenhouse get cornered by Rosenbaum, turn around, and shoot him. Still on video, he then begins making a call on his cell phone—possibly to call 911 for Rosenbaum—when someone shouted, “Get that m-----------, get him!” Rosenbaum died of the gunshot wound to the head. (It's important to note that Rosenbaum was one of the rioters who was yelling at Rittenhouse earlier in the evening and daring people to shoot him. Rosenbaum was a felon and convicted child molester according to the Arizona Department of Corrections.)
That prompted Rittenhouse to run again (right in front of a camera shooting video, incidentally), when he slipped and fell in the street. At that point, someone in the crowd shouted, “Get his ass!” As two men charged him on the ground—one swinging a skateboard, later identified as Anthony Huber, hitting him on the head and back, the other kicking his chest—Rittenhouse shot Huber, who died. (Huber, a two-time violent felon also had four other arrests on his police record, according to the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Office.)
At that point, another man later identified as Gaige Grosskreutz, who had been charging him with a Glock pistol in hand, paused a few feet away with his hands up, but was still holding the pistol. Rittenhouse is seen pointing his gun at the man but holding his fire. Suddenly, Grosskreutz lunged and Rittenhouse shot him, too. Grosskreutz’s right bicep was almost completely destroyed due to the gunshot, but he survived. (Grosskreutz may also be a convicted felon and would most likely be charged with unlawful possession of a firearm if this is the case. It is not clear, at the time of this writing, if a felony charge of burglary from August 2013 was reduced, or if it was dropped. He is also a member of the People’s Revolutionary Movement, a communist-based group.)
Of course, grown men brutally attacking anyone is a crime. Attacking a minor is considered a more severe crime in most jurisdictions and carries a higher penalty.
For those who say gunfire is overstepping when being beaten by a skateboard or kicked in the head, they’re flat wrong. Any object—from fists, to boots, to a skateboard—can cause severe, lasting brain damage after just a few blows, or death. [EDITOR’S NOTE: A Molotov cocktail is a weapon and classified by the BATFE in the exact same category with artillery, anti-tank weapons, hand grenades, and other similar weapons, as destructive devices.]
Prosecutors, however, apparently didn’t see it that way. In the liberal Democrat-run city, it’s not surprising that an arrest was made. It is, however, somewhat surprising that Rittenhouse has been charged with first-degree intentional homicide.
Regardless of the outcome in that criminal prosecution, even the city’s chief of police said what was obvious to many observers.
“Last night, in a situation that began peaceful and turned somewhat unruly ... persons who were out after the curfew became engaged in some type of disturbance and persons were shot,” Police Chief Daniel Miskinis said. “Had persons not been out involved in violation of that, perhaps the situation that unfolded would not have happened.”
Of course, the so-called “mainstream” media immediately sided with what they love to call “peaceful protesters” instead of even considering the shooting might have been self-defense. Most, of course, don’t even believe in the concept of armed self-defense and believe all guns are bad, no matter who owns them.
The Peoples Dispatch, whose writer apparently didn’t bother to watch the same videos we saw, featured the headline, “White supremacist who killed two protesters in Kenosha arrested nearly 12 hours later.” NBC News decided to focus on something that the editors there seemed to see as even more horrifying, running with the headline, “Teen arrested in Kenosha shooting promoted 'Blue Lives Matter,' posed with firearms online.” Oh, the horror!The shooting came the same day an elderly business owner in Kenosha was beaten by violent looters (peaceful protesters, to the so-called “mainstream” media) as he tried to protect his business. When he tried to run the looters off by spraying a fire extinguisher at them, one man punched him, knocking him flat on his face on the sidewalk. Many of those in the area tried to help him, but from video posted on Twitter, it was easy to tell he was badly hurt.
Here’s a tip for those protesting in the streets of America. Burning, looting, destroying other people’s property, and threatening the lives of others goes far beyond a “peaceful protest,” and authorities should put a stop to this criminal behavior immediately. Further, beating people who are armed and apparently not willing to take it can lead to severe repercussions—including death.