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Father sues Kenosha police for not doing enough to stop Kyle Rittenhouse killing his son

The lawsuit claims that Kenosha law enforcement protected armed counter-protesters

Graig Graziosi
Wednesday 18 August 2021 21:21 BST
Wisconsin Republican Senator Ron Johnson refuses to directly denounce Kyle Rittenhouse

The family of a man who was shot and killed by Kyle Rittenhouse during a racial justice protest last year is suing the city of Kenosha, Wisconsin, claiming that it and the city's police did not do enough to prevent the violence that occurred.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of John Huber, the father of Anthony Huber, who was killed by Mr Rittenhouse.

Among the claims made by the lawsuit are that local law enforcement "deputised" and "conspired" with armed counter-protesters like Mr Rittenhouse.

The Kenosha County sheriff, the former chief of police and the current acting chief of police at the Kenosha Police Department are named as defendants.

“John Doe police officers of the Kenosha Police Department and Kenosha County Sheriff's Department" and the city and county of Kenosha are also named.

The lawsuit also claims that law enforcement thanked Mr Rittenhouse and other armed counter-protesters for showing up, gave them water and "allowed them to openly defy the emergency curfew order that was in place."

According to the lawsuit, the named defendants allegedly "made plans to funnel the protesters toward the armed individuals" so they could "deal with them."

The suit claims that these actions, in addition to police negligence, directly contributed to Mr Rittenhouse's eventual confrontation with and killing of protesters on the night of the protest.

The plaintiffs argue that the police tolerance and alleged encouragement of the armed counter-protesters gave "license for the armed individuals to wreak havoc and inflict injury."

The protests in Kenosha broke out after the police shooting of Jacob Blake. Mr Blake survived the shooting, but was left paralyzed by his injuries. On 25 August, Mr Rittenhouse shot and killed Mr Huber, who was trying to disarm him with a skateboard.

Mr Rittenhouse has maintained his actions were taken in self defense.

The shooter is facing counts of first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide and attempted first-degree homicide, as well as charges for possessing a dangerous weapon while under the age of 18 and reckless endangerment. His bail has been set at $2m, and his trial will begin in November.

Sam Hall, an attorney representing Kenosha County and Sheriff David Beth in the lawsuit, told The Hill that the allegations in the complaint are false.

“While we understand that the family of Anthony Huber is grieving his loss, we must make it clear that the allegations against Sheriff Beth and the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office are demonstrably false and that the facts will show that Mr. Huber’s death was not caused by any actions or inactions of Kenosha County law enforcement,” Mr Hall wrote.

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