Kyle Rittenhouse, who was recently acquitted of all counts in his homicide trial, wants to make the distinction between the purpose of his case and his thoughts on racial issues. During an interview with Tucker Carlson, the gunman declared his support for the Black Lives Matter movement while explaining that his sole intent was to prove that his shootings at a Kenosha protest were simply acts of self-defense.
“This case has nothing to do with race. It never had anything to do with race. It had to do with the right to self-defense,” said Rittenhouse. “I’m not a racist person. I support the BLM movement, I support peacefully demonstrating […] The jury reached the correct verdict — self-defense is not illegal. I’m glad that everything went well. We made it through the hard part.”
Rittenhouse was present last August when demonstrators in Kenosha gathered to protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man who was shot multiple times in the back and left paralyzed from the waist down. During the trial, he explained that he traveled from his home in Antioch, Illinois to protect the property of private businesses and offer first aid to those in need. While prosecutors claimed he was in search of trouble that night, the teen maintained his innocence, noting he rang fire in self-defense after Joseph Rosenbaum threatened him, Anthony Huber attacked him and Gaige Grosskreutz pointed a firearm in his direction.
“I didn’t intend to kill them,” he said in reference to his fatal shootings of Rosenbaum and Huber. “I intended to stop the people who were attacking me. I did what I had to do to stop the person who was attacking me.”
The primarily white jury eventually ruled in Rittenhouse’s favor. On Friday (Nov. 19), after a two-week-long trial and four days of deliberation, the judge announced that he was found not guilty of five counts, including first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide, attempted first-degree homicide and reckless endangerment.
Look below to see a clip from Rittenhouse’s interview with Tucker Carlson.