Jacob Blake no longer handcuffed to his hospital bed, say attorneys

Wisconsin governor says Mr Blake has already paid 'horrific price'

Oliver O'Connell
New York
Saturday 29 August 2020 20:22
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Jacob Blake is no longer shackled to his hospital bed, as he had been following a police shooting in southeastern Wisconsin that left him paralysed, according to his attorneys.

Mr Blake, a black man, was shot seven times in the back on Sunday by Kenosha police officer Rusten Sheskey who was responding to a domestic abuse call.

Since then protesters have rallied in Kenosha’s streets every night in demonstrations against police racism and brutality.

It was revealed on Thursday that Mr Blake was handcuffed to his hospital bed in Milwaukee.

His father told the Chicago Sun-Times that he was upset to learn of this given that his son is now paralysed and cannot go anywhere.

Mr Blake was wanted on suspicion of felony sexual assault when he was shot.

The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement that all hospitalised patients in police custody are restrained unless undergoing medical procedures.

However, when asked during a news conference whether he was concerned about Mr Blake being handcuffed, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers responded: “Hell, yes.”

He added that Mr Blake had already paid a “horrific price”.

Mr Blake’s attorney in the sexual assault case said on Friday that his client was no longer in restraints. He said the arrest warrant in the sexual assault case has been vacated, although charges remain.

The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement that Mr Blake was no longer in custody because he has posted bond and deputies are no longer guarding him at the hospital.

In a statement, Mr Blake’s attorneys in the shooting case, Ben Crump, Patrick Salvi and B’Ivory Lamarr, said: “Fortunately, a man who is paralysed and fighting for his life after being shot seven times in the back, will no longer have to deal with the pain of having his ankles and wrist shackled and the traumatic stress of being under armed guard.”

With reporting from the Associated Press

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