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Juror In Kyle Rittenhouse Trial Removed After Telling Joke About Police Shooting

by : Emily Brown on : 04 Nov 2021 18:01
Juror In Kyle Rittenhouse Trial Removed After Telling Joke About Police ShootingAlamy

One of the jurors in Kyle Rittenhouse’s trial has been dismissed from the proceedings after admitting to telling a joke about the police shooting of Jacob Blake. 

Rittenhouse has pleaded not guilty to charges including first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide and first-degree attempted intentional homicide after shooting two men and injuring a third during protests following the shooting of Blake by a police officer in August 2020.

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Judge Bruce Schroeder dismissed the juror, identified only as Juror #7, just days after the trial began this week after receiving approval from both the defence and the prosecution.

Kyle Rittenhouse in court (Alamy)Alamy

The juror made the joke while being escorted by a sheriff’s deputy to his car, according to CNN, though he declined to repeat it when called into court for questioning.

Recalling his conversation with the juror, Schroeder said: ‘I’m going to summarize what I remember, what I was told. He was telling a joke … he told the officer … he made a reference about telling a joke about ‘Why did it take seven shots to shoot Jacob Blake,’ something to that effect.’

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According to Insider, Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger said he’d heard fourth-hand that the apparent ‘punchline’ of the joke was that the officer ran out of bullets.

Binger commented: ‘To me, anyone who would find that funny would be finding that if the Kenosha police had more than seven bullets, they would have continued to shoot Jacob Blake.’

Judge Bruce Schroeder (Alamy)Alamy

The juror told the judge the joke ‘had nothing to do with the case’, to which Schroeder responded: ‘It is clear that the appearance to bias is present and it would seriously undermine the outcome of the case.’

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The juror said, ‘My feelings is, it was nothing to do with the case. It was nothing to do with Kyle and his charges’, though Schroeder stressed the public ‘needs to be confident that this is a fair trial’.

Jacob Blake’s uncle, Justin Blake, told CNN his family is ‘disturbed and disgusted’ by reports of the joke, saying: ‘The juror’s mentality shows his bias and callousness and he should be nowhere near the jury box in this case.’ He added: ‘It shows the depravity and racism and the lowness of a member of a jury that was selected in one day.’

Following the dismissal, the panel is down to 19 total jurors; 11 women and eight men. Once deliberations begin, the panel will be narrowed down to 12 members, according to the judge.

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University and went on to contribute to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming Senior Journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news, trending stories and longer form features.

Topics: News, Homicide, Jacob Blake, Kyle Rittenhouse, Now, Trial

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  1. CNN

    Juror in Kyle Rittenhouse trial dismissed for telling joke about police shooting of Jacob Blake