Rittenhouse attorney blasts more misleading coverage of trial: ‘It just continues a false narrative’

Defense attorney Mark Richards sounded off on his disgust with the media coverage of the Rittenhouse case in an exclusive interview on “The Story with Martha MacCallum” Monday.

MacCallum opened the segment by referencing several instances of media pundits exaggerating or misconstruing details regarding the Kyle Rittenhouse shooting even after the conclusion of the trial.

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One example included CBS’ “Face the Nation,” which continued to push the false idea that Rittenhouse had crossed state lines with his gun, an allegation the network was forced to issue a correction on later.

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 15: Mark Richards, Kyle Rittenhouse's lead attorney, center, stands in from of his team as they wait for the day to begin at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 15, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse is accused of shooting three demonstrators, killing two of them, during a night of unrest that erupted in Kenosha after a police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back while being arrested in August 2020. Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, was 17 at the time of the shooting and armed with an assault rifle. He faces counts of felony homicide and felony attempted homicide. (Photo by Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images)

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN – NOVEMBER 15: Mark Richards, Kyle Rittenhouse’s lead attorney, center, stands in from of his team as they wait for the day to begin at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 15, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse is accused of shooting three demonstrators, killing two of them, during a night of unrest that erupted in Kenosha after a police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back while being arrested in August 2020. Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, was 17 at the time of the shooting and armed with an assault rifle. He faces counts of felony homicide and felony attempted homicide. (Photo by Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images)
(Sean Krajacic)

“Let’s just start on that. Obviously it’s disturbing. I know you have spoken about it to hear the inaccuracies that were discussed about this case prior to the trial. The fact that it’s still happening, what is damaging about that at this point for the country on the whole?” MacCallum asked.

“It just continues a false narrative that these things happen when they didn’t,” Richards responded. “Kyle was a resident — I shouldn’t say he wasn’t but his dad lived there. He worked in the community. His best friend lived there, he spent a lot of time in Kenosha. The gun was never in Illinois. There’s no evidence that he had any ties or affinity to white racists, white supremacists. They looked through his phone, did nine search warrants to find some dirt. They came up with none. He wasn’t.”

MacCallum inquired whether that false narrative extended to the prosecution team against Rittenhouse. Richards admitted that white the prosecuting lawyers said things that he didn’t approve of, he’s uncertain whether it would rise to the level of misconduct.

Kyle Rittenhouse, center, enters the courtroom with his attorneys Mark Richards, left, and Corey Chirafisi for a meeting called by Judge Bruce Schroeder at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Police departments across the country said they were ensuring the right to peaceful protests following his not guilty verdict Friday.

Kyle Rittenhouse, center, enters the courtroom with his attorneys Mark Richards, left, and Corey Chirafisi for a meeting called by Judge Bruce Schroeder at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Police departments across the country said they were ensuring the right to peaceful protests following his not guilty verdict Friday.
(Sean Krajacic/The Kenosha News)

“Did the prosecutors do some things that I really don’t approve of? Yes. Did it rise to the level of prosecutorial misconduct from a legal standpoint? I don’t think it necessarily did. Them putting on evidence that they know was untrue? Totally inappropriate. But would that have been able to get Kyle a new trial if he was found guilty? I don’t think so,” Richards said.

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Richards also revealed he discussed life choices with Rittenhouse after he received a not guilty verdict for shooting and killing two men, which he said was in self-defense, during the Kenosha riots.

“We’ve had that talk with Kyle. It’s a fine line where he decides to go. Ultimately I hope he makes the right choices,” Richards said.

Both MacCallum and Richards also gave credit to the trial jurors who ruled in spite of intense pressure from protesters and the media.

Nov 15, 2021; Kenosha, WI, USA; Kyle Rittenhouse, left, listen as his attorney, Mark Richards, give his closing argument during  Rittenhouse's trail at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021.

Nov 15, 2021; Kenosha, WI, USA; Kyle Rittenhouse, left, listen as his attorney, Mark Richards, give his closing argument during  Rittenhouse’s trail at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., on Monday, Nov. 15, 2021.
(Sean Krajacic/Kenosha News/Pool via USA TODAY NETWORK)

“They’re under a tremendous amount of pressure. Many of them if not all of them knew that going into it once they knew the case that they had been summoned for. The answers that they gave back in chambers late in the voir dire process, one woman that made the final 12, you know, flat out said, no matter what we decide, half of the United States is going to be mad at us. So they had that in their minds, had to be I think at the forefront. I give them a huge amount of credit for being able to put that aside, not listen to the people who were outside screaming and yelling to hang Kyle and do what I think the evidence warranted,” Richards said.

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