Kyle Rittenhouse trial prosecution blew up their own case: Katie Pavlich

Katie Pavlich reacted on “The Five” to the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse back-and-forth closing arguments, which took place Monday at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Wisconsin.

Rittenhouse shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, with an AR-15 during the August 2020 protests and riots in Kenosha that erupted after police shot Jacob Blake, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. The third person Rittenhouse shot, Gaige Grosskreutz, survived and testified last Monday. 

Katie Pavlich said that the prosecution’s case was blown up by the witnesses they called to the stand, such as Grosskreutz, who testified that it wasn’t until he pointed his gun at Rittenhouse that the teen boy fired. 

“The prosecution has repeatedly changed their story based on their own witnesses blowing their case. Gaige Grosskreutz, for example, admitting that he was fired upon by Kyle Rittenhouse after he pointed his Glock 19 in his face and so therefore proved the self-defense case for the jury,” Pavlich said. 

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Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger holds Kyle Rittenhouse's gun as he gives the state's closing argument in Kyle Rittenhouse's trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021.  Rittenhouse is accused of killing two people and wounding a third during a protest over police brutality in Kenosha, last year.  (Sean Krajacic/The Kenosha News via AP, Pool)

Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger holds Kyle Rittenhouse’s gun as he gives the state’s closing argument in Kyle Rittenhouse’s trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021.  Rittenhouse is accused of killing two people and wounding a third during a protest over police brutality in Kenosha, last year.  (Sean Krajacic/The Kenosha News via AP, Pool)
(Sean Krajacic/The Kenosha News via AP, Pool)

The prosecution took to storytelling to persuade the jury to view Rittenhouse as a vigilante who was looking to “provoke” trouble with the crowd. They further argued defendant wrongfully used deadly force in a situation that did not require it. 

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“It certainly cannot be reasonable for someone to be holding an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle with powerful ammunition and be chased by someone who is unarmed who’s smaller than him, who’s shorter than him and the first thing you do to defend yourself is you plug four rounds into him,” Assistant District Attorney James Kraus said. 

The defense went on the attack on the prosecutor’s methods and asserted that 17-year-old Rittenhouse acted in self-defense. They tried to illustrate the case at times within the context of lawlessness which followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake. 

A man on a bike rides past a city truck on fire outside the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin, U.S., during protests following the police shooting of Black man Jacob Blake August 23, 2020. Picture taken August 23, 2020. Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA TODAY via REUTERS MANDATORY CREDIT

A man on a bike rides past a city truck on fire outside the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin, U.S., during protests following the police shooting of Black man Jacob Blake August 23, 2020. Picture taken August 23, 2020. Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA TODAY via REUTERS MANDATORY CREDIT
(Mike De Sisti/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA TODAY via REUTERS MANDATORY CREDIT)

“Ladies and gentlemen, [assistant DA] Mr. Binger and I have gone round around round and it until the cows come home. They were rioters. They weren’t demonstrators. The demonstrators were down by the courthouse earlier in the night? Yes. There were people doing legitimate demonstration. These people were rioting,” defense attorney Mark Richards said.

Pavlich also raised how Kenosha was preparing for possible riots by deploying the National Guard. 

“Kyle was tried in the court of public opinion. There are National Guard troops on guard to make sure that the place is and burned down again. Watching all of the footage and … the evidence from this trial brings up last summer again and how this was allowed in city after city … people were killed as a result of this rioting, and it was excused over and over and over again,” she said. “People are threatening to riot if Kyle is not convicted. Well, who are they defending in this case?”

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Kyle Rittenhouse talks about how Gaige Grosskreutz was holding his gun when Rittenhouse shot him on Aug. 25, 2020, while testifying during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin, November 10, 2021. 

Kyle Rittenhouse talks about how Gaige Grosskreutz was holding his gun when Rittenhouse shot him on Aug. 25, 2020, while testifying during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin, November 10, 2021. 
(Sean Krajacic/Pool via REUTERS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

She continued, “Are defending a Rosenbaum, who is a convicted sex offender child rapist. Are they defending Huber, who was a domestic abuser who was charged with felony strangulation? Is that what we’re doing here? Because then it really points out right versus wrong in this country. And are you on the side of Kyle Rittenhouse, who was there to clean up graffiti and defend his community? Or are you going to defend the guy who ended up … attacking him? Is that who you’re going to defend and burn the city down again for? I mean, that’s what this comes down to at this point.”

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