Monday, January 24, 2022

Man who bought guns for Kenosha shooter Kyle Rittenhouse escapes jail thanks to plea deal

MADISON, Wisconsin (AP) – The man who bought the AR-15 rifle for Kyle Rittenhouse on Monday pulled out of challenging charges of assisting a minor in a deal with prosecutors that would keep him out of jail.

Kenosha District Judge Bruce Schroeder accepted Dominic Black’s statement during a six-minute hearing. Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger dropped two felony charges for the purpose of delivering a dangerous weapon to a minor as part of a deal.

WATCH: Analysis of the sentence to Rittenhouse

Contributing to a juvenile delinquency is an offense punishable by up to nine months in prison, but Binger commuted to a non-criminal county ordinance violation. Under the agreement, Black will pay a $ 2,000 fine. Each felony is punishable by up to six years in prison and a $ 10,000 fine.

Rittenhouse used the rifle to shoot three people, killing two, during a tumultuous night of protests in Kenosha in 2020 over the shooting of black Jacob Blake by a white police officer. In November, a jury acquitted Rittenhouse of murder and other charges.

Binger told Schroeder that he did not believe he could move forward on a felony charge against Black, who testified against Rittenhouse. Binger noted, among other things, that during the Rittenhouse trial, Schroeder sided with defense lawyers who argued that Wisconsin law prohibits minors from owning short-barreled rifles and short-barreled shotguns, but allows them to have long-barreled weapons.

“In these circumstances, bringing a felony charge against Mr. Black, given the legal decision of the court and the cooperation of Mr. Black and the jury’s decision in the Rittenhouse case, seems inappropriate,” Binger said.

Black’s lawyer Tony Cotton said nothing other than confirming the deal. He told the Associated Press in an email after the hearing that “justice has been done.”

“The District Attorney’s Office did the right thing in agreeing to drop the felony charges against our client, especially since the jury found Rittenhouse innocent,” Cotton said.

Black was 18 and was dating Rittenhouse’s sister when he bought an AR-15 type rifle for Rittenhouse in May 2020. Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, was 17 years old. hunt in a friend’s territory in northern Wisconsin.

Three months later, in August 2020, Rittenhouse used a rifle to shoot Joseph Rosenbaum, Anthony Huber, and Gage Grosskreutz. Rosenbaum and Huber died of their wounds. Rittenhouse is white, like all the people he shot.

Rittenhouse claimed that he fired in self-defense after being attacked by men. On the last day of the trial, Schroeder dropped the charge of being a minor in possession of a firearm.

Binger told Schroeder Monday that he expected a judge to dismiss the felony charges against Black based on that decision. He also told Schroeder that he disagreed with his interpretation of state law and asked the district attorney’s office to appeal the decision.

District Attorney Michael Gravely did not immediately respond to the report.

The rifle was flagged as evidence at the Rittenhouse trial, but it is unclear what will happen to it. Rittenhouse’s lawyer Mark Richards said that Rittenhouse wants to be destroyed. Graveley also did not respond to a message about what would be done to him.

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