Police caught an unidentified person taking video of the jury in the Kyle Rittenhouse case just days after a friend of George Floyd threatened to do just that on social media.
Before the trial got underway on the sixth day of testimony, a police lieutenant reported to the judge that someone had been caught recording images of the jury as they arrived at the pick-up point where police transport jurors to the Kenosha County Courthouse.
According to the judge, the police officer made the individual erase the video on their cell phone. It’s not clear if that person was banned from the courthouse according to the judge.
Judge Bruce Schroeder said that if it happened again officers should confiscate the camera equipment.
The judge was asked if that person has been in the courtroom observing the trial, and the judge said he is not sure.
— Andrew Havranek (@Andrew_Havranek) November 9, 2021
Spectrum News 1 reported that the cop had no idea if the same person had been in the courtroom taking photos.
George Floyd’s friend, Cortez Rice, who is sometimes referred to as Floyd’s nephew, released a video on Twitter in which he claims he knows people gathering photos and other information about the remaining 18 men and women in the jury pool.
Cortez issued the video as an apparent warning to the jury. In it, he says he didn’t even “want to name the people that I know that is in the Kenosha trial. But there’s cameras in there. There’s definitely cameras up in there and there’s definitely people taking pictures of the juries and everything like that. We know what’s going on. So we need the same results, man.” He then began listing people he believed needed “justice.”
Cortez issued his threat on Twitter.
I was in the courtroom on Friday and did not see such activity but this needs to be looked into because potential jurors on Monday said they were concerned for their safety/having their identities revealed. He could be talking big on social media but this is a very serious claim. https://t.co/qjeMuG3JWs
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) November 7, 2021
During jury selection, some jurors worried about civil unrest if the wrong verdict was reached. Others said they felt secure, and the judge promised there would be intense security for jurors.
Sounds like that security failed.
Last year, Kenosha erupted into violent chaos after a black man, Jacob Blake, was shot and wounded by police officers. Many businesses were torched and destroyed by rioters and looters.
Though Rittenhouse is of mixed race on his dad’s side and the people he shot are white, his trial is seen through a racial lens because of its proximity to the Blake shooting.
Rittenhouse is charged with six counts that could land him in the prison for the rest of his life. Rittenhouse claims self-defense in the deaths of Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber, as well as in the wounding of Gaige Grosskreutz. He’s also charged with endangering an unidentified man, who had kicked Rittenhouse in the head, and for endangering a Daily Caller reporter.
He’s also looking at an additional sentence for being an underage person in possession of a dangerous weapon. In testimony on Monday, Gaige Grosskreutz, who testified that he pointed his own gun at Rittenhouse before the teen wounded him, was illegally carrying his gun on Aug. 25, 2020. He has neither been charged with breaking curfew nor for carrying an illegally concealed firearm.
It was also brought out in court that Grosskreutz lied to police multiple times after his shooting and never told them he was armed and pointed his gun at Rittenhouse when he was shot. He’s asked for $10 million from the city for his wounds.
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