Mercado was on the road as soon as Rittenhouse’s rifle fired shots that night. He streamed the video as Rittenhouse ran between the first and second shoots.
“I jumped out of objective observer mode and I grabbed people and tried to help them,” Mercado said.
Mercado wasn’t the only one capturing Rittenhouse’s footage. Video streams have featured prominently at the trial so far, with several livestreamers and reporters witnessing.
Kristen Harris, who hosts the web-based talk show “The Rundown Live,” testified Monday after video footage shot that night was shown earlier at trial.
He told The Associated Press that he saw livestreams as “the crudest form of reporting” that would “allow people to make decisions for themselves.”
But even with plenty of video footage from the shooting scene, Rittenhouse’s case has been shrouded in a cultural wedge that has been used by powerful interest groups, extremists, politicians and others to advance their own agendas.
“They’re capturing snippets and slices of big events,” said Lewis, a journalism professor. “They still don’t provide all the pieces of the puzzle.”
However, Lewis pointed out that smartphones – and their ability to capture video instantly – have completely changed how instances of police brutality are documented, especially of black people.