Authorities Kenosha County, Wisconsin decline to prosecute white cop who shot Jacob Blake in the back, leaving him paralyzed
On Tuesday County District Attorney, Michael Graveley, said his office will not file charges against white police officer Rusten Sheskey
Sheskey is the Kinosha police officer who shot black man Jacob Blake seven times, in Kenosha on Aug 23, 2020, leaving him paralyzed
Sheskey, a seven-year veteran had responded to a call about a domestic incident
During the arrest he opened fire as Blake was getting into his SUV, where his three young children watched on in Kenosha, Wisconsin
It is ‘incontrovertible’ that Blake had a knife, saying officers reported seeing a razor blade-type knife, Graveley said
DA Graveley said they couldn’t disprove Sheskey’s claim of self-defense
Condemning the decision, Blake’s lawyer said: ‘This sends the wrong message to police officers throughout the country. It says it is OK for police to abuse their power and recklessly shoot their weapon’
No charges will be filed against white police officer in Winsconsin who shot an unarmed blackman leaving him in a wheel chair.
Five months ago officer Rusten Sheskey Jacob Blake seven times in the back and left him paralyzed, a development that creatednational outrage.
Kenosha County prosecutors announced Tuesday that ‘No Kenosha law enforcement officer in this case will be charged with any criminal offense’. Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley announced said no charges would be filed against officers Vincent Arenas and Brittany Meronek, the other two officers involved in the incident. No charges will be filed aginst Jacob Blake either.
Graveley noted that a separate federal civil rights investigation into the shooting is ongoing.
On August 23 officer Rusten Sheskey, a seven-year veteran of the Kenosha Police Department, responded to a domestic incident in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
He ended up shooting one of the parties, 29-year-old Jacob Blake, multiple times as he tried to get into his SUV. Blake’s three young children who were in the back seat, watched the shooting real time..
He has been left paralyzed and in constant pain. He was discharged from the hospital in October.
District attorney Graveley said no charges were filed because prosecutors could not disprove Sheskey’s claim of self-defense. He said it is ‘incontrovertible’ that Blake had a knife, citing how officers reported seeing a razor blade-type knife and Blake admitted to authorities he had a knife.
The shooting triggered massive, outraged protests in the city decrying police brutality and demanding accountability.
Wisconsin had already started to brace for renewed protests ahead of the decision with Gov. Tony Evers mobilizing 500 National Guard troops to help Kenosha authorities, the county sheriff declaring a state of emergency, and Mayor John Antaramian was given power to enact a curfew.
On Tuesday before Graveley shared the announcement he pleaded for peace.
‘Rather than burning things down, can moments of tragedy like this be an opportunity to build things?’ Graveley said.
At the lengthy press conference Graveley played a recording of Blake’s girlfriend’s 911 call to police, saying he had the keys to a rental car and was worried he would take it and crash it.
When Sheskey arrived to the scene of the 911 call he saw Blake placing a child in the car saying: ‘I’m taking the kid and I’m taking the car.’
The cops then tried to take Blake to the ground and shock him with Tasers three times, but it had no effect, leading to the shooting.
Graveley said that Blake was shot four times in the back and three times in the side and Sheskey told investigators he fired until Blake dropped the knife then tried to give him medical aid.
Sheskey told investigators he used deadly force because he was afraid of Blake and feared he was trying to flee the scene and kidnap a child in the backseat of the vehicle.
Sheskey, Vincent Arenas and Brittany Meronek, the officers who were at the scene in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave.
Following the announcement, Jacob Blake’s attorneys Ben Crump, Patrick A. Salvi II and B’Ivory LaMarr released a statement condemning the decision.
‘We are immensely disappointed in Kenosha District Attorney Michael Graveley’s decision not to charge the officers involved in this horrific shooting. We feel this decision failed not only Jacob and his family, but the community that protested and demanded justice,’ thesaid.
‘This sends the wrong message to police officers throughout the country. It says it is OK for police to abuse their power and recklessly shoot their weapon, destroying the life of someone who was trying to protect his children,’ it adds.Wisconsin police shoot black man in the back as he walks away.
In sharing the highly-anticipated news, Graveley said how personally difficult the decision was.
‘I feel in many ways completely inadequate for this moment. I have never in my life had a moment where I’ve had to contend with explicit or implicit bias based on my race. I have never had a moment in my life where I’ve had to fear for my safety either with police officers or people in authority,’ he said.
He noted that he never had to face police officers ‘knowing I could face armed persons who might try to end my life.’
The shooting was captured on video and circulated online, fueling massive protests that caused $50 million in damage to public and private property in Kenosha.
The Kenosha City Council held a meeting on Monday and agreed to grant Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian emergency powers as officials prepared for expected unrest following the DA’s decision.
In anticipation of the announcement many businesses were boarded up and some streets in Kenosha were closed.
Wisconsin had already started to brace for renewed protests ahead of the DA’s decision with Gov. Tony Evers mobilizing 500 National Guard troops to help Kenosha authorities. Meanwhile some businesses boarded up this week ahead of the announcement, bracing for renewed protests in light of the District Attorney’s office decision.
Activists show support for Jacob Blake Jr. during a vigil near the Kenosha County Courthouse on Monday in Kenosha, Wisconsin, urging for Sheskey to be charged
On Monday Blake’s father, Jacob Blake Sr, led a rally throughout Kenosha where he called for charges against Sheskey, urging the public to ‘stand up and make some noise.’
‘Let’s be heard around the world. We’re not going to stop in Kenosha. We’re headed to DC. We’re headed to Nancy Pelosi’s office. We’re headed to whoever is going to be in charge of the Senate. Because this has got to be federally heard, for not just my son, but for everybody who has suffered police brutality – everyone,’ he said.