Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old gunman accused of killing protesters in Kenosha, Wi., in August, posted $2 million bail and was released from custody, NPR reports. Rittenhouse, who prosecutors say had an older friend buy him a gun, faces five criminal charges for killing Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and wounding Gaige Grosskreutz. Rittenhouse crossed into Wisconsin from Illinois on Aug. 25 after the protests that erupted over the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man shot times by Kenosha Police in front of his children. Blake is now paralyzed.
Lawyers representing the Illinois teen argue he killed Rosenbaum and Huber in self-defense. Rittenhouse also told police he was attacked while guarding a business. Members of a group calling itself the Kenosha Guard put out a call on Facebook for armed volunteers to “defend” the city from what they characterized as violent, leftist marauders. His case has become a flashpoint between conservatives and Black Lives Matter supporters. On the left, he is portrayed as the embodiment of today’s domestic terrorism threat. On the right, the teen’s actions were justified as self-defense. Social media accounts linked to Rittenhouse portrayed a police booster aligned with ‘Back the Blue,’ pro-cop activism widely seen as a racist response to Black Lives Matter. Rittenhouse told the Washington Post he paid for the weapon with a check from the coronavirus stimulus program.