Last week, 17 year old Trump supporter Kyle Rittenhouse drove across state lines with an assault weapon where he engaged with those protesting against police brutality in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse, who claimed to be protecting businesses, shot and killed two protesters, wounding a third.
He was permitted by the police to leave the scene before being arrested on multiple charges at his home in Illinois.
A graphic video of the shooting shows Rittenhouse kill protester Anthony Huber. In an attempt to disarm Rittenhouse after he'd killed his first victim, Huber chased Rittenhouse and hit him with a skateboard before Rittenhouse fired.
Republicans have largely stopped short of condemning Rittenhouse. President Donald Trump even defended him, claiming he was acting in self-defense.
Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) went further, commending Rittenhouse in a radio interview on Thursday.
On Kyle Rittenhouse, "The strongest thing in his favor is actually the video of the event...the video of him running down the street and falling. He was fulfilling his obligation to retreat...he fell down...he responded in self defense...I would not convict," Rep. Thomas Massie. pic.twitter.com/K8STedCJnh
— Eva McKend (@evamckend) September 3, 2020
Massie claimed that video showed that Rittenhouse was acting in self-defense and went on to praise his demeanor:
"He also exhibited incredible restraint and presence and situational awareness. He didn't empty a magazine into a crowd."
He said that he wouldn't convict Rittenhouse if sitting on the jury.
People were repulsed by Massie's words, with many correcting him.
Kyle fired his gun BEFORE he was chased down. https://t.co/8INLHKwMPP
— Heather (@heather513) September 4, 2020
The crowd was trying to stop a live shooter who had already murdered one man. He then murdered another.
— Non-Elite White Person (@LotionDolphin) September 4, 2020
Minors should not be at riots play-acting at being cops. I think we can agree on that.
— charles black (@cboozb) September 4, 2020
TRUE, I AM A FASCIST, any more translation needed, let me know.
— JEFERSONFREPRES (@JEFERSONFREPRES) September 4, 2020
Are you condoning the use of 17 year old soldiers in militias?
— DSFB (@gregminnick_) September 4, 2020
Several Twitter users say they wouldn't trust Massie to be a juror on the case.
Judge, we'd like to dismiss this juror.
— David G Bussard Jr (@davidgbussardjr) September 3, 2020
I don't think you are supposed to announce what your verdict would be until you have sat through evidence and a trial. Am I correct?
— Worried Patriot (@OhioApril) September 3, 2020
Well, you'd never be selected for this jury since you've decided on a verdict without hearing any evidence. Good grief!
— Barb Sergent (@wadesergent) September 4, 2020
Rittenhouse faces two murder charges.