Jacob Blake speaks from hospital bed says it hurts to breathe
Officer Rusten Sheskey was will not be charged in the shooting of Jacob Blake over the summer, according to Kenosha County District Attorney Mike Graveley.
Mr Blake was shot in the back seven times by Mr Sheskey after attempting to leave the scene of a domestic dispute on 23 August.
Officers claimed Mr Blake had a knife at the time, but Mr Blake’s lawyers contend that the claim is untrue. Mr Graveley also said Mr Blake would not be charged with any crimes.
The city of Kenosha, Wisconsin has been preparing for protests when the decision comes in. The Wisconsin National Guard has deployed. Safety efforts announced by local officials also include designated demonstration spaces, road closures, a curfew, protective fencing, and limitations on city bus routes.
In a separate development, teenager Kyle Rittenhouse today pleaded not guilty to all charges relating to the fatal shooting of two men and wounding of another in the unrest that followed the shooting of Mr Blake.
Kenosha’s ‘moment of truth’?
In September 2020 an independent consultant was appointed to investigate the shooting of Jacob Blake.
Former Madison police chief Noble Wray said at a press conference at the time that the investigation “will be a moment of truth” for Wisconsin, and that the outcome of the case has not been predetermined.
While the investigation will continue to be led by the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), the final investigative file would be handed over to Mr Wray for expert analysis in recommendation of a charging decision.
Justin Vallejo reported for The Independent back in September.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 22:54
Kenosha and the campaign
The shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha came towards the end of a summer of demonstrations about police brutality towards the Black community following the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd at the hands of officers in Louisville and Minneapolis.
Both Joe Biden and Donald Trump made high profile visits to the Wisconsin city in the aftermath of the incident and the subsequent unrest.
Richard Hall reported for The Independent on the significance of the visits by the respective campaigns back in September.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 22:38
Blake family: This will impact this nation for many years to come
“For those that believe that Black Lives Matter, stand up around this nation, and let’s let them know we’re not going to tolerate this anymore,” says a member of the Blake family.
They say this decision is unacceptable and ask people to peacefully protest and this decision.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 22:22
Jacob Blake Sr to speak with lawmakers about criminal justice laws
PBS White House correspondent Yamiche Alcindor says that Jacob Blake’s father is expected to visit Washington later this week to speak with lawmakers about criminal justice reform.
Mr Blake says his son was treated “like an animal”.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 22:13
Video: Kenosha County District Attorney announces no charges
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:59
‘This is an outrage’ says Rev Al Sharpton
“This is an outrage, even though it’s expected,” says Reverend Al Sharpton of the National Action Network.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:45
Blake family reaction
Ben Crump, lawyer for the Blake family, tweets: “We are immensely disappointed and feel this decision failed not only Jacob and his family but the community that protested and demanded justice.”
He adds: “Our work is not done and our hope is not lost.”
Mr Crump vows to continue to press forward and fight for systemic change in policing and transparency at all levels.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:43
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:23
Jacob Blake will also not have any charges brought against him.
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:19
No charges filed against police officer who shot Jacob Blake
Oliver O’Connell5 January 2021 21:18