RACINE, Wisc. — Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of all charges Friday after pleading self-defense in the deadly Kenosha shootings.
After the verdict was announced – the prosecution and defense offered their response.
Just Thursday night attorney Mark Richards the defense attorney for Rittenhouse, was predicting a hung jury and said he felt they were split evenly as they the considered the case for more than 25 hours. That all changed in a big way just after lunchtime Friday when they returned a verdict: not guilty on all counts.
“It’s been a long day. It’s been a long three weeks. We’re very happy with the verdict,” he said. “We’re happy the jury took the time and put in an incredible amount of effort.”
Richards offered his reaction to reporters in front of his Racine office shortly after a jury found Rittenhouse not guilty on all counts.
“Kyle is not here. He’s on his way home he wants to get on with his life,” he said. “He has a huge sense of relief for what the jury did to him today. He wishes none of this would have ever happened.”
Over three and a half days, Richards said he agonized along with the nation over what the jury of seven women and five men would conclude.
“They didn’t have a lot of questions. We had no information that they ever fought,” he said. “They were just working through the issues. It was the time that made me nervous”
Perhaps the key moment in the two week trail was Richards’ decision to put Rittenhouse on the stand. His tearful testimony, perhaps persuading jurors that the shootings were in self-defense.
The Kenosha County district attorney did not speak to reporters, instead issuing a brief written statement that said: “We respect the jury verdict based on three and a half days of careful deliberations. Certainly, issues regarding the privilege of self-defense remain highly contentious in our current times. We ask that all members of the public accept the verdicts peacefully and not resort to violence.”
Rittenhouse is not expected to make a public statement Friday. As Richards said he went home and wants to move on. His family has said he will continue to study to be a nurse.
The family of Anthony Huber, one of the men Rittenhouse shot and killed that night, said in a stamen that they are “heartbroken.”