Conservatives praised the jury’s not guilty verdict Friday in the murder trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, a teenager who fatally shot two people and wounded a third during anti-police brutality demonstrations in Wisconsin.
The trial has divided the nation along partisan lines, with many Republicans and conservatives saying Rittenhouse was justified in shooting people threatening him.
A number of liberals and Democrats have expressed shock that Rittenhouse, who was 17 at the time of the shootings, could be found not guilty after traveling to Kenosha armed with a rifle to, according to his defense, protect businesses in the community.
“I believe justice has been served in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. I hope everyone can accept the verdict, remain peaceful, and let the community of Kenosha heal and rebuild,” Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonWisconsin senators ask outsiders not to exploit parade attack 'for their own political purposes' It's time to bury ZombieCare once and for all Marjorie Taylor Greene introduces bill to award Congressional Gold Medal to Rittenhouse MORE (R-Wis.) tweeted.
I believe justice has been served in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. I hope everyone can accept the verdict, remain peaceful, and let the community of Kenosha heal and rebuild.— Senator Ron Johnson (@SenRonJohnson) November 19, 2021
“Kyle Rittenhouse is not guilty, my friends. You have a right to defend yourself. Be armed, be dangerous and be moral,” Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) said in a story posted to Instagram with a caption that read “Kyle: If you want an internship, reach out to me.”
Madison Cawthorn offers Kyle Rittenhouse “an internship,” says he isn’t guilty, and tells followers to also “be armed and dangerous.” pic.twitter.com/m3EHnp5EOD— PatriotTakes (@patriottakes) November 19, 2021
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris ChristieChris ChristieChristie: McCarthy, not Trump, will be the next Speaker The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Arbery case, Biden spending bill each test views of justice Sunday shows - Spotlight shifts to Senate for Biden spending plan MORE (R) also praised the verdict, saying prosecutors had overreached in trying to convict him.
Justice was done in the Rittenhouse verdict. Renews our faith in the jury system. When prosecutors overreach as they did in this case, juries are there to insure justice for the defendant. It is not a perfect system—but still the best one in the world.— Governor Christie (@GovChristie) November 19, 2021
Rittenhouse was acquitted on five counts, including intentional homicide, in connection to shooting the three men in Kenosha.
Rittenhouse, who lived in Illinois, had traveled to Wisconsin amid demonstrations against police brutality following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man.
The jury's verdict came as a disappointment to many Democrats and criminal justice advocates, saying it was "another example of the difficult road to justice in America," according to Wisconsin senatorial candidate Mandela Barnes.
"The presumption of innocence until proven guilty is what we should expect from our judicial system, but that standard is not always applied equally. We have seen so many Black and brown youth killed, only to be put on trial posthumously, while the innocence of Kyle Rittenhouse was virtually demanded by the judge," Barnes said in a statement.