MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The man who bought an AR-15-style rifle for Kyle Rittenhouse pleaded no contest Monday to a reduced charge of contributing to the delinquency of a minor in a deal with prosecutors to avoid prison.
Kenosha County Circuit Judge Bruce Schroeder accepted Dominick Black’s plea during a six-minute hearing. Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger dropped two felony counts of intent to deliver a dangerous weapon to a minor as part of the deal.
Contributing to the delinquency of a minor is a misdemeanor punishable by up to nine months in jail, but Binger reduced the charge to a non-criminal citation. Under the deal, Black will pay a $2,000 fine. Each felony count would have been punishable by up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Black was 18 and dating Rittenhouse’s sister when he purchased an AR-15-style rifle for Rittenhouse in May 2020. Rittenhouse, of Antioch, Illinois, was 17 — not old enough to purchase a firearm.
Three months later, in August 2020, Rittenhouse used the rifle to shoot Joseph Rosenbaum, Anthony Huber and Gaige Grosskreutz during a tumultuous night of protests in Kenosha over the shooting of a Black man, Jacob Blake, by a white police officer. Rosenbaum and Huber died of their wounds. Rittenhouse is white, as were all of the people he shot.
Rittenhouse argued that he fired in self-defense after the men attacked him. He was acquitted in November of homicide, attempted homicide and reckless endangering.
On the last day of his trial, Schroeder dismissed a charge of being a minor in possession of a firearm. He sided with defense attorneys who argued that Wisconsin law prohibits minors from possessing short-barreled rifles and short-barreled shotguns but allows them to possess long guns.
Black had testified that he bought the rifle for Rittenhouse so they could target shoot and hunt on a friend’s property in northern Wisconsin.
The rifle was tagged as evidence in Rittenhouse’s trial, but it’s unclear what will become of it. Rittenhouse’s attorney, Mark Richards, said Rittenhouse wants it to be destroyed. Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley didn’t respond to a message inquiring about what will be done with it.