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Kyle Rittenhouse trial: Judge sets final rules

Kyle Rittenhouse’s homicide case was officially presided over on Monday (Oct. 25) by the Wisconsin judge who is presiding over the 18-year-old’s trial

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Credit: Sebastian Pichler

Kyle Rittenhouse’s homicide case was officially presided over on Monday (Oct. 25) by the Wisconsin judge who is presiding over the 18-year-old’s trial. The rules announced by Judge Bruce Schroeder included a list of terms that lawyers may and may not use when discussing the three men Rittenhouse shot last year.

“I am not going to tell the defense they can’t use terms such as arson, rioting, looting if more than one of them participated in those activities,” the judge said.

The two men who Rittenhouse killed could not also be referred to as “victims,” Schröder said.

“The word ‘victim’ has a lot of baggage attached. It is related to ‘alleged victim’,” he said.

Several weeks are expected to pass before Rittenhouse’s trial is concluded. Juror selection is set to begin next Monday (Nov. 1). In an anti-police brutality protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, triggered by the police killing of Jacob Blake, the native of Antioch, Illinois is accused of fatally shooting two men and seriously injuring a third.

John Black, the defense’s use-of-force expert, will also be able to testify at the hearing, but only if he speaks only about the timeline of events that night, Judge Schroeder said on Monday. There will be no opportunity for Black to express an opinion regarding Rittenhouse’s mental state at the time of the incident or whether he was acting in self-defence or not.

Additionally, Schloeder allowed the Kenosha police to use footage during the trial of Rittenhouse’s interaction with them. Officers gave Rittenhouse a bottle of water for showing appreciation for the militia member’s presence and told him they appreciated him being there.

The jury was instructed, when the defendant walked down the sidewalk and did what he says he was paid to do and the police said great to see you, is that something that influences the defendant and emboldens him? The judge argued that this would be a relevant argument.

Among the charges against him are homicide, attempted homicide, and working with a firearm while under the age of 18.

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