A court’s decision to acquit an accused shooter sparked widespread protests in New York and Portland, plus looting in Chicago on Nov. 19.
Masses of activists shoplifted and demonstrated after Kenosha County Circuit Court freed Kyle Rittenhouse.
Demonstrators showed strong dissatisfaction with Judge Bruce Schroeder, and a randomly selected jury. They made this known by allegedly looting businesses, vandalizing private property, and assaulting law enforcement officers.
About 200 protesters forced their way through the Multnomah County Justice Center’s front gate. They reportedly battled with police officers, prompting the Portland Police Bureau to declare a riot.
Five citation warrants and 17 warnings were issued. At least one wanted suspect was detained.
Downtown Chicago protests resulted in looting at the Neiman Marcus department store and one GameStop electronics store on the south side.
Hundreds more gathered near the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York to voice outrage about the ruling. Further rallies are expected to be held across the United States.
President Joe Biden, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) and other politicians urged everyone to stay calm and respect the judgment.
“I echo the calls of local Kenosha community leaders and join them in asking everyone, who might choose to assemble and exercise their First Amendment rights in any community, to please only do so safely and peacefully,” Evers said according to the Daily Mail.
“We must have peace in Kenosha and our communities, and any efforts or actions aimed at sowing division are unwelcome in our state as they will only hinder that healing,” he added.
A jury recently acquitted Rittenhouse, 18, of all charges. This includes two counts of murder, one count of attempted murder by hurting a third person, and two counts of endangering the safety of others.
Rittenhouse allegedly killed two people during a 2020 demonstration in Kenosha, Wis.