The Kyle Rittenhouse murder trial continues this week as testimony from witnesses resume.
The only protestor to survive the Rittenhouse shooting will take the stand this week with testimony that could play a crucial role in the trial.
Last week Rittenhouse’s lawyer Mark Richards said the young teenager could take the stand in his defense, allowing the 18-year-old some say into his mindset during the night of the deadly shootings.
But some experts warn that this move would be a mistake by the defense. It leaves Rittenhouse open for a comprehensive cross-examination by prosecutors into his past actions and statements, which could be detrimental to Rittenhouse’s chances of acquittal.
If he takes the stand, he’d have to admit to killing two people. Even though it’s a self-defense claim, it could make him look bad to a jury.
During the highly publicized George Zimmerman trial for the murder of Trayvon Martin, Zimmerman’s lawyers decided to not allow him to take the stand. Zimmerman was eventually acquitted leaving many to believe the decision to keep him off the stand contributed to his ‘Not Guilty’ verdict.
Kyle Rittenhouse and George Zimmerman have a lot of similarities. Both men were propelled to hero status by conservatives after their shootings arrests and both men plead “Not Guilty” claiming self-defense as their reason for taking lives. Both trials will also test the boundaries of and rights of citizens when it pertains to self-defense.
Thus far, the Rittenhouse trial has been a whirlwind of emotions.
A juror was dismissed on the third day of the trial after he made a joke about the police shooting of Jacob Blake, the black man shot by Kenosha police which sparked the protests that led to the Rittenhouse shooting. Jury selection has also been a cause for concern since only one juror is a person of color.
Rittenhouse is charged with the shooting death of Anthony Huber, 26, and Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, as well as the attempted murder of Gaige Grosskreutz, 26, who was shot in the arm and survived. If convicted he could face up to life in prison. But the defense team will look to take a page from the Zimmerman playbook and convince a jury to be sympathetic to Rittenhouse and keep him from a life behind bars.