Most Read

News

Kyle Rittenhouse Juror Kicked Out After Making Crude 'Joke' To Bailiff About Jacob Blake Shooting

Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images

A juror in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse was dismissed from service--and for good reason.

Kyle Rittenhouse, a now 18-year-old Illinois resident, is currently on trial for the murder of two people and the attempted murder of a third during a protest against police violence in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse was 17 at the time he traveled from Illinois to Wisconsin with an illegal firearm.

The Kenosha Black Lives Matter protest was one of many across the United States that occurred in 2020 after the filmed death of George Floyd at the hands of police officer Derek Chauvin in Minneapolis, Minnesota. As more unarmed Black men were killed or injured, new protests began.

The Kenosha protest was jn honor of Jacob Blake, an unarmed 29 year-old Black man who was shot in the back and seriously injured by police officer Rusten Sheskey in August of 2020. The shooting left Blake paralyzed from the waist down, while Sheskey returned to duty in April of this year and has not faced any criminal consequences.

During this protest, Rittenhouse had his mother drive him across state lines to Kenosha to confront the protesters. When Rittenhouse—who was armed with an AR-15 style rifle—clashed with a mentally ill homeless man and two Black Lives Matter protesters, he fired his weapon, leaving two men dead and one injured.

Rittenhouse's trial on charges of felony homicide began on Tuesday, November 2, 2021.

But one of the trial jurors—an older White man—has already been dismissed after making a racist joke to the bailiff about Blake, the victim whose shooting led to the protest where Rittenhouse chose to shoot three men.

He said:

"Why did the Kenosha police shoot Jacob Blake seven times?"

While it is disputed whether the juror followed through with the punchline or not the Assistant District Attorney, Thomas Binger, said the punchline to the joke was:

"Because they ran out of bullets."

While the juror admitted to making the joke, he refused to repeat it and said the joke had nothing to do with the Rittenhouse trial.

He said:

"My feeling is it has nothing to do with the case."
"It has nothing to do with Kyle and his seven charges."

Prosecutors called the joke "tasteless," and argued it showed clear racial bias, making the juror unfit to serve on the jury as jurors must be impartial to the case.

Bruce Schroeder, Circuit Judge presiding over the Rittenhouse trial, agreed with the prosecution the joke showed racial bias and ruled to dismiss the juror from the trial.

Schroeder said:

"I've talked quite a bit about public confidence in the outcome of the trial."
"It is clear that the appearance of bias is present, and it would seriously undermine the outcome of the case."

Allegedly, the defense was initially resistant to the dismissal of the juror, but did not formally fight against it.

Twitter is was disgusted by the behavior of the dismissed juror and are applauding his dismissal.










This development comes just weeks after Schroeder declared the men Rittenhouse shot could not be referred to in court as "victims" but rather as "rioters, looters, and arsonists" even though the mentally ill homeless man Rittenhouse killed first was not involved in the protest.




Due to the highly-charged political and racial aspects of the case, both the prosecution and the defense had initially hoped to send out questionnaires to prospective jurors in order to detect any biases.

Schroeder, however, denied this request, which may have been a factor that led to the dismissed juror serving in the trial to begin with.

The nation has been anticipating the high-profile Rittenhouse trial, wondering whether justice will be done or whether Rittenhouse will walk free.

Only time will tell.