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Teen Shooting Suspect: My 'Job' Is to Protect People

Kyle Rittenhouse was a big supporter of police and the Blue Lives Matter movement
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 27, 2020 9:12 AM CDT

(Newser) – A lot of new information is surfacing about Kyle Rittenhouse, the white 17-year-old charged with fatally shooting two people and injuring another in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during protests this week. Coverage:

  • The teen from Antioch, Illinois, was a huge admirer of police, reports the AP. His now-deleted Facebook page was filled with tributes to the Blue Lives Matter movement. One photo showed him in police uniform from when he participated in a public safety cadet program at age 15, per NPR. He is also pictured holding assault rifles. Rittenhouse had dropped out of high school, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

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  • The Daily Caller recorded an interview with Rittenhouse before the shooting. "People are getting injured and our job is to protect this business," Rittenhouse says, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "And my job also is to protect people. If someone is hurt, I’m running into harm’s way. That’s why I have my rifle; I’ve gotta' protect myself, obviously. But I also have my med kit." The Journal Sentinel says Rittenhouse considered himself a militia member.
  • The New York Times tracks Rittenhouse's movements on Tuesday night through videos on social media. At one point, a video shows Rittenhouse being chased by a group of people, and during the chase, "an unknown gunman fires into the air, though it’s unclear why," per the Times. "Rittenhouse turns toward the sound of gunfire as another pursuer lunges toward him from the same direction. ... Rittenhouse then fires four times, and appears to shoot the man in the head."
  • Cellphone video taken before Tuesday night's shooting in Kenosha shows police giving bottled water to armed civilians—including a young man who appears to be Rittenhouse—and thanking them for their presence, reports NPR. "We appreciate you guys, we really do," says a man on a loudspeaker from an armored truck.
  • Rittenhouse is a strong supporter of President Trump. BuzzFeed spots him in the front row of a Trump rally in January in Des Moines. His social media feeds also backed the president.
(Read more Kyle Rittenhouse stories.)

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