Jacob Blake news - live: Family calls for peaceful protest after no charges brought against Kenosha officer

Follow the latest updates

Oliver O'Connell,Justin Vallejo
Wednesday 06 January 2021 01:38
Jacob Blake speaks from hospital bed says it hurts to breathe

Officer Rusten Sheskey was will not be charged in the shooting of Jacob Blake over the summer, according to Kenosha County District Attorney Mike Graveley.

Mr Blake was shot in the back seven times by Mr Sheskey after attempting to leave the scene of a domestic dispute on 23 August.

Officers claimed Mr Blake had a knife at the time, but Mr Blake's lawyers contend that the claim is untrue. Mr Graveley also said Mr Blake would not be charged with any crimes.

The city of Kenosha, Wisconsin has been preparing for protests when the decision comes in. The Wisconsin National Guard has deployed. Safety efforts announced by local officials also include designated demonstration spaces, road closures, a curfew, protective fencing, and limitations on city bus routes.

In a separate development, teenager Kyle Rittenhouse today pleaded not guilty to all charges relating to the fatal shooting of two men and wounding of another in the unrest that followed the shooting of Mr Blake.

Follow live


Jacob Blake’s uncle wraps march in Kenosha

This via Milwaukee Journal Sentinel journalist Mike De Sisti, who says Justin Blake ended up a march where it started at the Collective in Kenosha.

Justin Vallejo6 January 2021 01:38

Washington Post retracts tweet that ‘incorrectly’ said Jacob Blake was unarmed

The WaPo corrected the record after suggesting Jacob Blake was unarmed when shot by police.  

By their own words, that was “incorrect”.

“We’ve deleted a previous tweet that incorrectly described Jacob Blake as unarmed. While his family has said he was not armed when shot by police, prosecutors on Tuesday said video evidence depicts him holding a knife.”

In announcing that there would be no charges, the DA also made a point to mention that no charges would be brough against Blake.

Justin Vallejo6 January 2021 01:10

Watch: Kenosha police officer will not face charges in Jacob Blake shooting

“I’m going to also tell you, just because I think it is important, that no charge will be filed against Jacob Blake in regards to this incident as well".

Kenosha police officer will not face charges in Jacob Blake shooting
Justin Vallejo6 January 2021 00:40

‘Immensely disappointed’: Jacob Blake’s family react to no charge decision against police as Kenosha braces for protest

Rusten Sheskey will not face charges for the shooting of Mr Blake, a Black man, which sparked violent protests in Wisconsin last August.

Mr Blake was shot seven times in the back when officers responded to a domestic incident, and although he survived he was left paralysed from the waist down.

“We are immensely disappointed and feel this decision failed not only Jacob and his family but the community that protested and demanded justice,” said Mr Blake’s lawyer, Ben Crump.

"This isn't the news we hoped for, but our work is not done and hope is not lost.  

The Independent’s Graeme Massie reports.

Jacob Blake’s family react to no charge decision against police as Kenosha braces for protest

Governor has mobilised 500 National Guard troops to help control situation

Justin Vallejo5 January 2021 23:50

Kenosha’s ‘moment of truth’?

In September 2020 an independent consultant was appointed to investigate the shooting of Jacob Blake. 

Former Madison police chief Noble Wray said at a press conference at the time that the investigation “will be a moment of truth” for Wisconsin, and that the outcome of the case has not been predetermined.

While the investigation will continue to be led by the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), the final investigative file would be handed over to Mr Wray for expert analysis in recommendation of a charging decision.

Justin Vallejo reported for The Independent back in September.

'This will be Kenosha’s moment of truth’: Authorities extend investigation into police shooting of Jacob Blake

Former Madison police chief Noble Wray will review whether the facts of the case line up with standard police practices

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 22:54

Kenosha and the campaign

The shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha came towards the end of a summer of demonstrations about police brutality towards the Black community following the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd at the hands of officers in Louisville and Minneapolis. 

Both Joe Biden and Donald Trump made high profile visits to the Wisconsin city in the aftermath of the incident and the subsequent unrest.

Richard Hall reported for The Independent on the significance of the visits by the respective campaigns back in September.

Joe Biden visits Kenosha to set out alternative vision for how a president should respond to race protests

For the second time in just three days, a battle-scarred Kenosha becomes the backdrop to one of the most divisive and acrimonious political campaigns in recent US history

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 22:38

Blake family: This will impact this nation for many years to come

“For those that believe that Black Lives Matter, stand up around this nation, and let’s let them know we’re not going to tolerate this anymore," says a member of the Blake family.

They say this decision is unacceptable and ask people to peacefully protest and this decision.

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 22:22

Jacob Blake Sr to speak with lawmakers about criminal justice laws

PBS White House correspondent Yamiche Alcindor says that Jacob Blake’s father is expected to visit Washington later this week to speak with lawmakers about criminal justice reform. 

Mr Blake says his son was treated “like an animal”.

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 22:13

Video: Kenosha County District Attorney announces no charges

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 21:59

‘This is an outrage’ says Rev Al Sharpton

“This is an outrage, even though it’s expected,” says Reverend Al Sharpton of the National Action Network.

Oliver O'Connell5 January 2021 21:45

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments