Kyle Rittenhouse, the Antioch, Illinois, teenage police supporter who opened during a chaotic sequence of events in Kenosha, Wisconsin, has now been criminally charged with two counts of homicide and other criminal charges.
The court records indicate the case was filed electronically and there is a prosecutor’s demand for discovery. A witness list was filed. Read the full criminal complaint here.
The charges hit the Wisconsin Circuit Court website around 5 p.m. on August 27, formally charging Rittenhouse, 17, with the following charges:
Count no. Statute Description Severity Disposition
1 940.02(1) 1st-Degree Reckless Homicide Felony B
Modifier: 939.63(1)(b) Use of a Dangerous Weapon
2 941.30(1) 1st-Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety Felony F
Modifier: 939.63(1)(b) Use of a Dangerous Weapon
3 940.01(1)(a) 1st-Degree Intentional Homicide Felony A
Modifier: 939.63(1)(b) Use of a Dangerous Weapon
4 940.01(1)(a) Attempt 1st-Degree Intentional Homicide Felony A
Modifier: 939.63(1)(b) Use of a Dangerous Weapon
5 941.30(1) 1st-Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety Felony F
Modifier: 939.63(1)(b) Use of a Dangerous Weapon
6 948.60(2)(a) Possess Dangerous Weapon-Person CCAP[/caption]
Here’s what you need to know:
What the Criminal Complaint Alleges
The criminal complaint gives a detailed narrative for the first time of the State of Wisconsin’s allegations against Rittenhouse.
It accuses him of the following:
“An 8 p.m. curfew had been imposed east of I-94 in Kenosha County due to civil unrest. On August 25th at approximately 11:45 p.m. a shooting occurred at Car Source which is located at the northwest corner of 63rd St. and Sheridan Road in the City and County of Kenosha, State of Wisconsin.”
According to the complaint, the man who was shot at this location “was identified as Joseph Rosenbaum. Rosenbaum was transported to a local hospital where a doctor declared him to be deceased on August 26, 2020 at 12:47 a.m. In the course of investigating this incident, law enforcement reviewed and shared with your complainant multiple videos that appeared to be recorded on cell phones. In the first video, a male who was later identified to be Kyle H. Rittenhouse, DOB: 01/03/03 (hereinafter “the defendant”), is running southwest across the eastern portion of the Car Source parking lot.”
The defendant is a resident of Antioch, Illinois, the complaint states. “The defendant can clearly be seen holding a long gun, which was later recovered by law enforcement and identified as a Smith & Wesson AR-15 style .223 rifle. The recovered magazine for this rifle holds 30 rounds of ammunition.”
There were two shooting scenes. The first man who died was trailing behind Rittenhouse and threw a plastic bag at him, according to the complaint.
“Following the defendant is Rosenbaum and trailing behind the defendant and Rosenbaum is a male who was later identified as Richard McGinnis, a reporter,” it says. “The video shows that as they cross the parking lot, Rosenbaum appears to throw an object at the defendant. The object does not hit the defendant and a second video shows, based on where the object landed, that it was a plastic bag. Rosenbaum appears to be unarmed for the duration of this video.”
A review of the second video “shows that the defendant and Rosenbaum continue to move across the parking lot and approach the front of a black car parked in the lot. A loud bang is heard on the video, then a male shouts, ‘F*ck you!,’ then Rosenbaum appears to continue to approach the defendant and gets in near proximity to the defendant when 4 more loud bangs are heard. Rosenbaum then falls to the ground. The defendant then circles behind the black car and approaches Rosenbaum. Rosenbaum remains on the ground,” says the complaint.
McGinnis “also approaches, removes his shirt, and attempts to render aid to Rosenbaum. The defendant appears to get on his cell phone and place a call. Another male approaches, and the defendant turns and begins to run away from the scene. As the defendant is running away, he can be heard saying on the phone, ‘I just killed somebody,'” the complaint alleges. “Detective Cepress interviewed McGinnis and indicates the following: Before the shooting, McGinnis was interviewing the defendant. The defendant told McGinnis that he was a trained medic.”
McGinnis stated that he (McGinnis) “has handled many ARs and that the defendant was not handling the weapon very well. McGinnis said that as they were walking south another armed male who appeared to be in his 30s joined them and said he was there to protect the defendant. McGinnis stated that before the defendant reached the parking lot and ran across it, the defendant had moved from the middle of Sheridan Road to the sidewalk and that is when McGinnis saw a male (Rosenbaum) initially try to engage the defendant. McGinnis stated that as the defendant was walking Rosenbaum was trying to get closer to the defendant. When Rosenbaum advanced, the defendant did a ‘juke’ move and started running,” according to the complaint.
McGinnis stated that “there were other people that were moving very quickly. McGinnis stated that they were moving towards the defendant. McGinnis said that according to what he saw the defendant was trying to evade these individuals. McGinnis described the point where the defendant had reached the car. McGinnis described that the defendant had the gun in a low ready position. Meaning that he had the gun raised but pointed downward. The butt of the gun would have been at an angle downwards from the shoulder. McGinnis stated that the defendant brought the gun up. McGinnis stated that he stepped back and he thinks the defendant fired 3 rounds in rapid succession.”
The complaint further alleged:
McGinnis said when the first round went off, he thought it hit the pavement. McGinnis felt something on his leg and his first thought was wondering whether he had gotten shot. McGinnis was behind and slightly to the right of Rosenbaum, in the line of fire, when the defendant shot. McGinnis stated that the first round went into the ground and when the second shot went off, the defendant actually had the gun aimed at Rosenbaum. McGinnis stated he did not hear the two exchange any words.
McGinnis said that the unarmed guy (Rosenbaum) was trying to get the defendant’s gun. McGinnis demonstrated by extending both of his hands in a quick grabbing motion and did that as a visual on how Rosenbaum tried to reach for the defendant’s gun. Detective Cepress indicates that he asked McGinnis if Rosenbaum had his hands on the gun when the defendant shot. McGinnis said that he definitely made a motion that he was trying to grab the barrel of the gun. McGinnis stated that the defendant pulled it away and then raised it.
McGinnis stated that right as they came together, the defendant fired. McGinnis said that when Rosenbaum was shot, he had leaned in (towards the defendant). McGinnis stated that after the defendant shot he ran back towards the hospital towards the middle of the road. McGinnis stayed and turned his attention to Rosenbaum. McGinnis stated that he then heard other shots really soon after. The third video that your complainant reviewed shows the defendant running northbound on Sheridan Road after he had shot Rosenbaum. The street and the sidewalk are full of people. A group of several people begin running northbound on Sheridan Road behind the defendant.
The complaint now describes the next shooting, which occurred after Rittenhouse ran.
A person can be heard yelling what sounds like, ‘Beat him up!’ Another person can be heard yelling what sounds like, ‘Hey, he shot him!’ Your complainant reviewed a fourth video that showed a different angle of the defendant running northbound. In this video a person can be heard yelling, ‘Get him! Get that dude!’ Then a male in a light-colored top runs towards the defendant and appears to swing at the defendant with his right arm.
This swing makes contact with the defendant, knocking his hat off. The defendant continues to run northbound. On the video a male can be heard saying something to the effect of, ‘What’d he do?’ Another male can be heard responding something to the effect of, ‘Just shot someone.’
Then a male can be heard yelling, ‘Get his ass!’ The defendant then trips and falls to the ground. As the defendant is on the ground, an unidentified male wearing a dark-colored top and lightcolored pants jumps at and over the defendant. Based on the sounds of gunshots on the video and the positioning of the defendant’s gun, it appears that he fires two shots in quick succession at this person. It appears that that person was not hit as he then runs away from the defendant.
A second person who was later identified as Anthony Huber approaches the defendant who is still on the ground, on his back. Huber has a skateboard in his right hand. When Huber reaches the defendant it appears that he is reaching for the defendant’s gun with his left hand as the skateboard makes contact with the defendant’s left shoulder. Huber appears to be trying to pull the gun away from the defendant. The defendant rolls towards his left side and as Huber appears to be trying to grab the gun the gun is pointed at Huber’s body. The defendant then fires one round which can be heard on the video. Huber staggers away, taking several steps, then collapses to the ground. Huber subsequently died from this gunshot wound.
After shooting Huber, the defendant moves to a seated position and points his gun at a third male, later identified as Gaige Grosskreutz, who had begun to approach the defendant. When the defendant shot Huber, Grosskreutz freezes and ducks and takes a step back. Grosskreutz puts his hands in the air. Grosskreutz then moves towards the defendant who aims his gun at Grosskreutz and shoots him, firing 1 shot. Grosskreutz was shot in the right arm. Grosskreutz appears to be holding a handgun in his right hand when he was shot. Grosskreutz then runs southbound away from the defendant screaming for a medic and the defendant gets up and starts walking northbound.
The defendant turns around facing southbound while walking backwards northbound with his firearm in a ready position, pointed towards the people in the roadway. Dr. Kelley of the Milwaukee Medical Examiner’s Office conducted an autopsy on Joseph Rosenbaum. Dr. Kelley indicated that Rosenbaum had a gunshot wound to the right groin which fractured his pelvis, a gunshot wound to the back which perforated his right lung and liver, a gunshot wound to the left hand, a superficial gunshot wound to his lateral left thigh, and a graze gunshot wound to the right side of his forehead. Dr. Kelley also conducted an autopsy on Anthony Huber.
Dr. Kelley indicated that Huber had a gunshot wound to his chest that perforated his heart, aorta, pulmonary artery, and right lung. Detective Antaramian spoke with Dominic Black on August 26, 2020. Dominic stated that he received a phone call from his friend Kyle Rittenhouse, the defendant, at 11:46 pm in which the defendant stated that he shot someone. Detective Antaramian saw the defendant in person at the Antioch, IL Police Department and identified the defendant as the shooter in the various videos.
Rittenhouse, Who Came to Kenosha to Guard People & Property, Is Accused of Shooting Two Men to Death While Being Chased
Witnesses told Heavy at the scene that Rittenhouse was with a group of white males who came to Kenosha to defend property after Black Lives Matter protesters caused a series of arson fires and other property damage throughout the city. In one instance, an officer was struck with a brick. A call for armed citizens to defend people and property then went out on social media, although Kenosha police have not yet confirmed which group Rittenhouse was associated with, if any. Dramatic video and photos from the scene show him being struck by a man with a skateboard at one point in the sequence of events that saw Rittenhouse being chased down the street before opening fire for a second time.
It’s now believed that he shot and killed two people and wounded a third during two separate shooting incidents that unfolded within a few minutes of each other.
The shootings erupted the evening of August 25 as demonstrators and counter-demonstrators (both groups had armed people) milled in the streets and were pushed back from a park and courthouse by authorities. A series of clashes unfolded, and witnesses and videos indicate several different incidents of gunfire erupting. Witnesses and dispatch audio indicated the night of the shootings that there might be more than one shooter. Rittenhouse is the only accused shooter named so far. The New York Times reported in a painstaking chronology that another person fired a gun in the area before Rittenhouse opened fire the first time and that, in the second shooting, “Rittenhouse’s gunfire is mixed in with the sound of at least 16 other gunshots that ring out during this time.” It’s believed that only Rittenhouse’s gunfire struck people, though.
Pictures and video interviews have emerged showing Rittenhouse cleaning up graffiti before the shooting and protecting a car dealership (car dealerships were burned and targeted in the days before the shootings).
Richie McGinniss, a video editor with Daily Caller, interviewed Rittenhouse before the shootings. Rittenhouse was standing armed in front of a business that was burning the night before. “People are getting injured and our job is to protect this business,” Rittenhouse said. “And part of my job is also to help people. If there’s somebody hurt, I’m running into harm’s way. That’s why I have my rifle because I can protect myself obviously and my med kit.” The Times reported that Rittenhouse claimed he was pepper sprayed while protecting property by another person before the shootings.
In the first shooting, Rittenhouse was being chased by a group of unknown people for unknown reasons near a car dealership he had been protecting earlier. “While Mr. Rittenhouse is being pursued by the group, an unknown gunman fires into the air, though it’s unclear why. The weapon’s muzzle flash appears in footage filmed at the scene,” the Times wrote. At that time, Rittenhouse “turns toward the sound of gunfire as another pursuer lunges toward him from the same direction. Mr. Rittenhouse then fires four times, and appears to shoot the man in the head,” according to The Times. Witnesses told Heavy at the scene that they believed Rittenhouse and others got in an argument with people who had lit a small arson fire because they opposed them starting fires.
Rittenhouse made a phone call after the first shooting and then started running. Others gave chase and he tripped and fell, videos show. The Tribune says a voice on the video says, “I just killed somebody.”
In the second shooting, Rittenhouse opened fire while being rushed by three people, one with a handgun, after he tripped, the Times reported.
This man pieced together various video sequences, and they start with the earliest shooting in the timeline. He also claims that a person was running after Rittenhouse in the first shooting, too. The video, especially at the beginning, sheds new light on the sequence of events. The Tribune reported that Rittenhouse “is too young to openly carry a firearm in Wisconsin.”
Graphic videos showed one deceased person lying on the ground with a head injury. A person in the video claims that Rittenhouse was shouting that he wasn’t the shooter before falling to the ground and opening fire. Videos show him surrounded by people, some of whom were attacking him or approaching him.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that the deceased people are “a 26-year-old man from the Kenosha County community of Silver Lake and a 36-year-old Kenosha man. A 26-year-old West Allis man was wounded.” Loved ones identified one of the deceased victims as Anthony Huber.
At one point following the August 25 shootings, Rittenhouse walked toward authorities with his hands up. An eyewitness told Heavy she saw that scene directly. However, Rittenhouse was able to leave the area. When asked how that could have happened, Kenosha County Sheriff Dave Beth said in a news conference that an officer may not have been aware what exactly was going on, saying, “There was screaming, there’s hollering, there’s chanting, there’s a squad car running, there’s (police vehicles) idling. If the officer happened to be in the car, the radio traffic was nonstop.”
Some on social media say he goes by the name Kyle Lewis. That is his mother’s last name, but court records use Kyle Rittenhouse.
Photos Show Rittenhouse in a Police Cadet Uniform & Supporting Law Enforcement
Photos on Rittenhouse’s mother’s Facebook page show him in what appears to be a police cadet uniform and a firefighter’s uniform. One picture contains the words, “We Back the Blue” and a heart with a thin blue line flag in it.
A now-deleted Facebook post indicates he was part of the Grayslake-Lindenhurst-Hainesville Public Safety Cadet Program in 2017. A photo shows Rittenhouse participating in a program for youths who showed an interest in law enforcement. Heavy has contacted the police department there for comment. The Washington Post reported that he was in a cadet program through the Antioch Fire Department and the Grayslake Police Department and also worked as a YMCA lifeguard.
In 2018, according to the Post, he started a Facebook fundraiser for Humanizing the Badge, a nonprofit to “forge stronger relationships between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve.”
“On August 25, 2020 at about 11:45 p.m. Kenosha Police, along with assisting agencies, responded to the area of 63rd Street and Sheridan Road for reports of shots being fired and multiple gunshot victims,” Kenosha police wrote in a news release.
“The shooting resulted in two fatalities and a third gunshot victim was transported to a hospital with serious, but non-life threatening injuries. The shooting investigation is active an ongoing. No further details regarding the shooting will be released at this time. The names, ages and cities of residence for the victims are still being determined.”
Police have not confirmed whether there is more than one suspect. They also haven’t yet identified the victims.
Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian called it a “difficult” and “devastating time” in the community of Kenosha. He said people have “differences of opinion … but violence in the community is not acceptable.” He said violence to people and property is not acceptable. He thanked Blake’s mother, who said such behavior should stop. “That is appreciated,” he said.
He said Kenosha will recover “in the long run. We will work together to resolve our issues. We will make this a better place to live. But it will take time, and it will take healing.”
He said Kenosha is not going to “let the violence continue.”
Rittenhouse’s TikTok page showed in a now-deleted video that he was in the front row at a January rally for President Donald Trump. “Trump rally!” the caption said. It was one of only two videos on his page. The rally was in Des Moines, Iowa. Rittenhouse worked as a lifeguard at a YMCA, according to Buzzfeed.
Trump’s campaign said he had nothing to do with it. “We’re not responsible for the private conduct of people at our rallies any more than … all the crazy people who have been involved with the Obama/Biden campaigns or other things,” Kellyanne Conway said, according to The Tribune.
On a second TikTok page, according to The Chicago Tribune, Rittenhouse posted a “video of himself firing a semi-automatic rifle at a target.” It appears to match the rifle he carried when the shootings unfolded.
Rittenhouse’s Facebook Page Was Filled With Pro-Law Enforcement Memes, Blue Lives Matter Support & Gun Photos
Screenshots from Rittenhouse’s Facebook page, which has now been deleted, show that his profile picture indicated support for Blue Lives Matter. It showed Rittenhouse holding a large weapon with the words “Blue Lives Matter” in a circle around him. His Facebook cover photo showed him with a large weapon. The photos were filled with law enforcement graphics, some honoring fallen officers and others showing a thin blue line flag.
People saved the screenshots of his page before it was taken down.
A photo from the suspect’s Facebook page showed him in a thin blue line flag shirt as far back as 2018, when he would have been around age 15.
Another old photo showed him in camouflage as a young kid.
One photo showed him wearing a large weapon and American flag slippers.
He has open Kenosha County traffic cases from August 19 on accusations of speeding on the freeway and operating without a valid license. Those records also give his address as being in Antioch.
According to Dan Lamothe of the Washington Post, Kyle Rittenhouse “attempted to join the Marine Corps in January, but was disqualified from serving after discussing his options with recruiters.” The military didn’t release the reason for the disqualification.
Videos Show the Suspect Named as Rittenhouse Being Chased & Hit With a Skateboard
Kenosha police told Heavy the state Department of Justice was investigating the shooting; DOJ is also the lead agency investigating the August 23 police shooting of Blake that started all of the disorder. Witnesses told Heavy at the scene that one man was shot in the head and described people convulsing and lying on the ground.
Videos and witnesses described a confusing scene with multiple eruptions of gunfire. At one point, videos and witnesses reveal, a white man in a green shirt ran down the street shouting that he wasn’t the shooter as people chased him. That was Rittenhouse. Several witnesses told Heavy he was struck by someone with a skateboard and fell to the ground with a gun in his hand, firing. People said they heard multiple guns going off.
Here are some photos from the scene. Rittenhouse is believed to be the male wearing a green shirt.
Three witnesses told Heavy that the initial shooting ignited when a man, who was white, argued with Black Lives Matter protesters because they had lit fires in the area. However, that information is not confirmed. However, they described a person in a helmet and bulletproof vest and said he was a different person from the man in a green shirt (who was Rittenhouse.) Eyewitness accounts can often be contradictory or even wrong after chaotic mass shootings.
One video showed Rittenhouse walking with police. The New York Times said police gave him water before the shootings when he was guarding the car dealership.
“Down at the end of the block, there’s another victim. There’s a loaded handgun in the road right here,” a man says in one of the videos, which you can see later in the story.
“Multiple gunshots are fired after people chased a guy with a rifle. Rifle dude tripped and fell. He fired his gun at a guy who jumped on top of him,” Julio Rosas, a journalist with TownHall.com, wrote.
In a video by CJ TV, the shooting breaks out around 7 minutes into the video, which appears to no longer be available. The narrator says a man’s arm was “blown off” at one point in the video. One shooter shot two people, the narrator says. He refers to the man in the green shirt as being one of the “militia” people.
In the beginning of that video, the protesters go to check out a tire fire. At that point, gunshots ring out. “Those are gunshots down there,” the narrator says and starts running. People start shouting for a medic. A garbage can is lying in the middle of the street, turned over.
Then, the man in a green shirt runs down the middle of the street carrying a long gun. “They’re going to beat him up,” someone says. More gunshots erupt.
“Oh s*** he just shot that guy in the stomach,” the narrator says. “S***, people are getting shot all around us.”
The accused shooter, Rittenhouse, is wearing a green shirt with a backward baseball cap and running with a long gun. People give chase. More gunshots erupt. “I didn’t f****** do it,” someone shouts.
A man is bleeding from his right arm and people grab a tourniquet. “That guy was directly in front of me and I watched him shoot two people,” the narrator says.
One live stream by Andrew Mercado shows people congregating at a gas station before gunfire breaks out down the street. “People are just shooting. Oh my God,” Mercado says. Be aware that the language in the video is graphic.
“Oh my f****** Christ God,” he says. “Oh s***, that’s gunshots. They’re shooting.” The gunshots break out at 3 hours and 40 minutes into the video above. Right before the shooting, Mercado says, “It looks like the town is kicking the people out. These are community members here.” Multiple gunshots ring out. “Shots fired. That’s real gunfire. Just passing 61st Street,” he says.
“Somebody’s hurt,” a man shouts.
“There’s still gunshots in the city. They’re shooting,” says Mercado. People run down the street.
“That’s not the shooter,” he says at another point. “Now he’s on the ground. He’s shooting, he’s shooting, he’s shooting. Get down. Get down.” More gunshots ring out.
“People down, shots are fired.”
More shots ring out in the video.
There is a fire burning on the street.
There is confusion about the man people are chasing. “He got hit in the head and dude he just shot. He had a gun in his hand,” Mercado said.
“This is getting too much,” another man told him. “Another person got shot point blank right down the street.”
A white man with a weapon in a baseball hat was interviewed. “We came out initially to protect the property here. Things got a little rowdy,” he said. “We were able to calm it down. We were then trying to provide medical aid to protesters.” He said people had various injuries including a “gunshot to the arm.”
“We don’t know who, what or why, someone approached someone with a gun and shot,” the man said, adding that two people were shot, possibly a third. The accused shooter kept saying, “I didn’t shoot anybody.” He had a medic bag on his back.
Julio Rosas, the TownHall reporter, described a series of conflicts between armed citizens and demonstrators.
He reported that “rioters are getting into confrontations with armed citizens who are out here to prevent looting and destruction to businesses.” Three witnesses told Heavy that they believed the shooter was part of, or hanging out with, those armed citizen groups; they described the group as “All Lives Matter” in focus, saying one of its members was wearing a shirt with that slogan, but that was not the shooter.
Heavy observed a group of multiple white men in camouflage and openly carrying long guns walking toward the protest crowd as the crowd squared off with police near the courthouse. That was about an hour before the shooting. Heavy also observed multiple Black Lives Matter protesters openly carrying firearms. People also set arson fires and broke windows and smashed cars. In one viral video, an elderly business owner was attacked while trying to defend his business with a fire extinguisher.