Bail has been set at $2 million for Kyle Rittenhouse, the teenager accused of shooting three people, two fatally, in Kenosha in August, as he made his first appearance in a Wisconsin court on Nov. 2.
The 17-year-old of Antioch, Illinois, was extradited to Wisconsin on Oct. 30. He faces six criminal counts, including first-degree intentional homicide from the Aug. 25 shootings that left Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, dead, and Gaige Grosskreutz, 22, injured.
Rittenhouse also faces counts of attempted homicide, reckless endangerment, and being a minor in possession of a firearm.
His attorneys say he acted in self-defense, and that he only fired his weapon after being attacked by protesters during unrest that erupted following the officer-involved shooting of 29-year-old Jacob Blake, who had resisted arrest.
The teenager’s defense lawyer, Mark Richards, requested that Court Commissioner Loren Keating set bail at $750,000 and place Rittenhouse on electronic monitoring. He noted that his client has no criminal record, turned himself in voluntarily shortly after the incident, has family in Kenosha, and has an "overwhelming" claim of self-defense.
"Who attacked my client first?" Richards asked. "Rosenbaum, then the mob, not demonstrators, but rioters with ill intent in their heart.”
Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger asked for $2 million bond, noting that Rittenhouse faces life in prison if convicted of the homicide charges, which makes him a flight risk.
“The defendant doesn’t want to be here and if released won’t come back,” Binger said.
John Huber, the father of Anthony Huber, spoke during the video hearing and asked Keating to set bail between $4 million and $10 million, arguing that Rittenhouse “thinks he’s above the law,” and has become a rallying symbol for conservatives upset by the destruction of property during protests this year over police brutality.
“He’s been treated as much by law enforcement. For him to run wouldn’t surprise me,” Huber said.
“Self-defense, that’s impossible,” he said. “He had already killed a guy and tried to run. My son was a hero. He tried to stop him. He was a hero. Anyone who says otherwise is dead wrong, including the president. How dare he.”
A series of events started when Rosenbaum approached the teen in a parking lot in Kenosha, leading to Rittenhouse firing several times, prosecutors said last month.
Video footage showed Rittenhouse start running down a road and several people hit or attempt to hit him, prompting him to fire at them.
If convicted of the charges, Rittenhouse faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
A preliminary examination was set for Dec. 3.