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Kyle Rittenhouse Jury Selected – Trial Begins Tuesday

Kyle Rittenhouse Jury Selected – Trial Begins Tuesday

Live coverage of the entire trial at Legal Insurrection.

Welcome to the Law of Self Defense ongoing coverage of the Kyle Rittenhouse trial! I am, of course, Attorney Andrew Branca, for Law of Self Defense.  Good news, the Kyle Rittenhouse trial is finally underway, with voir dire, or jury selection, having begun this morning.

UPDATE: Between when I started writing this post and when it was published, media reports are that individual voir dire completed today off-camera, and opening statements will happen tomorrow morning!

Highlights of today’s voir dire include:

  • The defense voir dire suggesting that Kyle Rittenhouse might testify at trial
  • Judge Schroeder contextualizing juror security concerns by noting that even judges hardly ever get assassinated
  • A juror excused because Second Amendment beliefs would not allow impartiality
  • A juror excused because hatred of AR rifles would not allow impartiality
  • A juror excused because she understood “Thou shalt not kill” to be literal
  • Judge Schroeder instructing jurors on “semi-automatic” versus “machine gun”
  • And much, much more! So let’s dive right in!


Rittenhouse Jury Selection Process

Trial Judge Bruce Schroeder has decided that he wants to end up with a seated jury of 20, to include 12 jurors who will deliberate a verdict, and 8 alternates.  Which specific jurors are alternates will not be determined until just before deliberations.

Judge Schroeder has also allowed each side to have 7 peremptory strikes, for a total of 14 strikes.

So, the Judge is looking to put together a group of 34 “qualified” jurors from which 14 can be struck, leaving the goal of 20 jurors to be seated.

In this context, “qualified” jurors appear to mean a group of jurors from whom the court has already removed everybody who should be struck for cause—some conflict of interest, unable to be impartial, important schedule conflict, and so forth.  This is, in other words, the “general voir dire” part of the jury selection process.

Once the group of 34 has been established, the parties will engage in “individual voir dire,” or individual questioning, where each party can question individual prospective jurors to determine if they wish to exercise one of their seven peremptory strikes on that particular prospective juror.

Working towards that group of 34 “qualified” jurors is what Judge Schroeder is engaged in today.

Outlining the Charges and General Narrative of Events

Judge Schroeder welcomed the prospective jurors, actually starting the day with an impromptu game of Jeopardy as everybody got settled.

He then named the defendant, Kyle Rittenhouse, and read out the charges against him, with a brief factual description of each, carefully noting that each was at present merely an allegation by the state.  These charges consisted of the six criminal charges I overviewed and analyzed in yesterday’s post (“Rittenhouse Trial: What to Expect As Trial Starts Monday”), with an additional seventh charge of violating curfew—this last charge, however, appears non-criminal in nature, as the state is required to prove it only be clear and convincing evidence.   Each criminal charge must, of course, be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, or the jury is obliged to acquit on that charge.

Judge Schroeder then provided a general narrative of the events that evening of August 25, 2020, that resulted in the cited charges, mostly framed along the lines of the District Attorney’s claims of those events.

Judge Schroeder Repeatedly References Founders

Before beginning general voir dire, Judge Schroeder had some introductory remarks for the jury about the importance of jury selection, as is commonly the case at the start of jury selection.  Perhaps less commonly, Schroeder went beyond the typical “it’s a civic duty” spiel, to also specifically reference the Founding Fathers, as well as ancient Greek and Roman history, as well as the period we used to refer to as the Dark Ages when I was a schoolkid.

Judge Schroeder noted that the Founders were very specific about putting a right to a jury trial in the Constitution, and not merely any jury but a fair and impartial jury of one’s peers.   He also noted that the Founders risked everything in doing so, including their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred Honor, quoting from the Declaration of Independence.

Schroeder acknowledged that the case had become unfortunately politicized, and had considerable criticism for the “irresponsible and sloppy” and sometimes deliberately biased reporting of the case by the media.

It’s fine if the prospective jurors had been exposed to such coverage, and even fine if they had developed opinions based on such exposure, but they would need to be able to set aside any such exposure and opinions and arrive at a verdict based solely on the evidence and legal arguments made in court, and the law as Schroeder instructed them.

General Voir Dire & Witness Lists

Judge Schroeder then began general voir dire of the group of 34 prospective jurors, first asking if any of them might be unable to disregard what they had previously learned about the case, and unable to decide the case solely on the evidence in court.

At least seven of the group of 34 raised their hands on this question.

Rather than dive into these concerns in detail at the moment, however, Judge Schroeder first had the state and then the defense read out their respective lists of possible witnesses they might call, asking the prospective jurors to raise their hands if they were related to or knew any of the persons named.  This took a while, as it seems the state alone had some 150 possible witnesses on their list (only a small fraction of which will actually be called to testify at trial).

There were occasional prospective jurors who raised a hand at a name, and these were flagged for further questioning during individual voir dire.

Many Prospective Jurors Had Formed an Opinion on Guilt

After the reading of the witness lists, Judge Schroeder returned to general voir dire, asking if any of the prospective jurors had previously formed or expressed an opinion as to the guilt or innocence of the defendant.

And here is where the court began to excuse for cause a substantial number of prospective jurors from the group of 34, replacing each with another prospective juror drawn from the spectator area of the court to maintain a constant figure of 34 in the “well” of the court.

Not everyone who professed to have previously expressed or formed an opinion as to guilt was excused for cause—if they were able to tell the court that they could set that opinion aside and deliberate the case on the evidence in court, they made it past general voir dire.

That said, at least 10 prospective jurors were excused for cause because they insisted that they could not set aside their formed opinion on guilt, regardless of what evidence they might see in court.  Most of these had apparently come to an opinion of guilt based upon the year or so of propaganda in which Kenosha County has been awash since the shooting.

One male prospective juror (#17), however, professed that he could not be impartial because of his abiding faith in the Second Amendment.

Schroeder quickly interrupted #17, pointing out that this was not a political trial, despite the extent to which the media and politicians had sought to make it political.  In this courtroom, Schroeder told him, we care only about the evidence and the law.  Schroeder wrapped up his remarks by noting specifically that Second Amendment issues were not at the core of this case. Unfortunately, that several-minute talk by the judge had little effect on this prospective juror, who was firm that he could not be fair and impartial, and was dismissed for cause.

Taking “Thou Shalt Not Kill” A Bit Too Literally

A female prospective juror (#10) had an interestingly ill-informed understanding of the 6th of the 10 Commandments.  Although the 6th Commandment is commonly written out as “Thou shalt not kill,” it is more properly understood to mean that one shall not kill unlawfully.  There are few followers of the 10 Commandments who do not acknowledge a privilege to kill in lawful defense of innocent life, for example, or to kill in necessary combat in defense of one’s nation.

Juror #10, however, took the absolute literal view that “God’s law” informed her that one may not kill under any circumstances, even under conditions of lawful self-defense.  Judge Schroeder respectfully suggested that the court was a secular entity within a society that allows for killing, if necessary, in lawful self-defense, but juror #10 could not be budged.  So, she was dismissed for cause.

About that time the court recessed for lunch. When the court returned from lunch there was a handful of additional general voir dire from the court, a few more prospective jurors were dismissed for cause, and then it was the state’s turn for general voir dire.

State General Voir Dire: ADA Timothy Binger

Prosecutor Binger reminded the prospective jurors that the “protests” last August had been the result of a Kenosha police officer shooting Jacob Blake on August 23, 2020.

He asked if any of them had participated in those protests. None had, but several had friends or relatives who had participated or attended.   One prospective juror was dismissed for cause when she indicated that her granddaughter attending made her unable to be fair and impartial.

Binger asked if any of the prospective jurors had been personally impacted by the property damage that resulted from the “protests,” and none had, although several had friends or family who had been personally impacted.  None of the prospective jurors indicated this would keep them from being fair and impartial.

Binger’s next question would consume quite a chunk of his time on voir dire—he asked if any of the prospective jurors had taken affirmative steps to protect their property or themselves in response to the “protests”—and a large proportion of the group raised their hands.

Several moved vehicles from the front of their property to the rear.  One removed a blue “support the police” porch light and replaced it with a regular bulb. Some helped board up their businesses or those of friends and relatives. Some moved their families out of the county for a few days, others stayed overnight at their local church. Another worked with a neighbor to establish a neighborhood watch.

Female Juror Buys Gun Rather Than Take Down American Flag

One female prospective juror told the court that her neighbors had urged her to take down the American flag on the front of her home, in fear that it would make her a target for attack.  Instead, however, she went out, purchased her first-ever firearm, and left her flag exactly where it was.

Binger asked if any of the group were familiar with guns, and a large portion was, either through hunter safety courses, hunting, target shooting, and several for personal protection purposes.

When asked about medical issues that might interfere with their jury service, several prospective jurors claimed such conditions.  A few were excused for cause, others not.

A few prospective jurors expressed concern about how the family would react if they came back with a verdict the family didn’t agree with—one woman was concerned about how her husband would react given his extremely strong position on the case, and another worried about what Thanksgiving Dinner with the family would be like with her PTSD-retired officer relative present (PTSD in part because of the Kenosha “protests”).

Binger spent a considerable time collecting employment and highest-degree-of-education information from the pool of prospective jurors.

And that was about it for the state’s general voir dire.

Defense General Voir Dire:  Attorney Corey Chirafisi

The general voir dire questions of the defense seemed largely focused on fear the prospective jurors may have felt during the riots—whether for themselves, their children, their relatives, their neighbors, their friends—as well as the fear they may be feeling even today if called to serve on the jury.

This is a smart play by the defense, as it helps replicate the emotional state many people would have been feeling at the time of the “protests,” and certainly that Kyle Rittenhouse was feeling as he was repeatedly attacked with deadly force on the night of August 25, 2020.  The more the defense can put the prospective jurors “in Kyle’s shoes,” the better the prospects for acquittal, and the more difficult the challenge for conviction.

Chirafisi also asked the prospective jurors about guns, and again many indicated a substantial degree of familiarity with firearms, and at least one female juror noted once more than she’d never owned a gun previously but had purchased one for personal protection precisely because of the perceived danger presented by the “protests.”

Chirafisi asked if any of the prospective jurors believed that someone who brought a firearm downtown must be guilty of something, but no one indicated that they did.

Similarly, he asked if any of the group believed that if someone violated the curfew, a ticketing offense rather than a crime, that they were responsible for everything that happened afterward, and again no one indicated that they did.

The AR-15 Exchange: “I’d Find Kyle Guilty Based On That Alone”

Interestingly, prospective juror #30, a woman, reacted poorly to Chirafisi informing the group that the firearm, in this case, was an AR-style rifle.  He pointed out that the particular rifle in question was technically called an MP-15, but that it might be referred to as an AR-15 during the trial.

She announced that, yes, she did have a problem with it, saying that she didn’t believe that a weapon like that should belong to the general public, even if it was legal to purchase.

When asked by Chirafisi if she thought she could judge the case fairly if it involved a legal firearm that she thought should not be legal, she answered, “No.”  Not surprisingly, Chirafisi immediately moved to strike her for cause.

Judge Schroeder appropriately enough asked if the state had any objection to this, and Binger took the opportunity to dig a little deeper on this question.

He asked the woman whether just the simple fact that if the evidence showed the defendant possessed an AR-15, did that mean she would just find him guilty of all the charges, based on that fact alone.

“Pretty much,” she answered.

And that was it for prospective juror #30, who was dismissed for cause without objection from the state.

Here’s that exchange:

The Machine Gun Exchange: “Just Taking Everybody Out”

Later another female prospective juror stated that she felt much the same about the case if a machine gun was involved.  Of course, Kyle’s MP-15 was merely a semi-automatic rifle, not an actual machine gun, but many people not very knowledgeable about firearms might perceive an MP-15 as a “machine gun” simply because of its appearance.

This led to a bit of an unwieldy exchange, as Chirafisi clearly wanted to inform the woman that the rifle involved was not a machine gun, but generally speaking the lawyers during voir dire are not supposed to touch upon specific facts of the case.

This led to Judge Schroeder interjecting to get the process over this bit of a procedural hump, and he took a few moments to explain the technical distinction between a genuine machine gun and a mere semi-automatic rifle.

Ultimately the woman indicated that she wouldn’t have a problem with the firearm in particular if it took a deliberate decision to fire each shot, as opposed to it “just taking everybody out.”

Here’s that exchange:

Might Kyle Testify In His Own Behalf?

Interestingly, Chirafisi also asked the prospective jurors whether, should Kyle choose to testify, that they would find his testimony less credible simply because he was charged in this case?  No one in the group said they would, which is not surprising. What is surprising is the question itself—because it suggests that the defense is holding open the option that Kyle himself may take the witness stand and testify in his own behalf, always a high-risk gambit.

Medical Training

Chirafisi also asked several questions about medical training, particularly in the context of gunshot wounds (GSWs), such artifacts of GSWs as stippling, but none of the prospective jurors expressed any particular expertise or experience on the subject—including the two pharmacists and (surprisingly) the Emergency Medical Technician, who had training on GSWs but not much experience.

Judge Schroeder: “Assassinations Hardly Ever Happen”

A bit later, a couple of jurors spoke to what seemed the be the elephant in the room, noting that given how divided the community and the country was on such cases, no matter what verdict they returned fully half the country would hate them—and they were concerned for their personal safety, as well as for the safety of the community if there were renewed “protests.”

One particularly vocal prospective juror on this issue, a woman, referred to her concern about “the crazies” who had rioted, looted, and burned the city the year before returning to do the same if there was a verdict they didn’t like.

A couple of female jurors also indicated that they’d declined to drive their own cars to the courthouse for jury selection, out of fear that someone might identify them, or damage their vehicle.

Judge Schroeder interjected here, attempting to assuage some of these fears—but frankly, he did not show the smoothest touch.  At one point he tried to put the threat in a reasonable context by noting that he’d been in the law for 50 years, 38 years as a trial judge, and no juror had ever been harmed.

Which is all well and good, but then he added, rather unhelpfully I thought, that even judges only get assassinated maybe once every 10 or 15 years.  I can only imagine what the concerned jurors now thought of their personal risks when even the judge himself might be the target of an assassination!

Chirafisi wrapped up with some routine questions on reasonable doubt, noting that the prosecution bore that burden both to prove the criminal charge beyond a reasonable doubt and also to disprove self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt.  He also spoke to the presumption of innocence, ensuring that the prospective jurors were not expecting that the parties were both starting in “the middle” but that the defense started with that presumption of being innocent.

And that was about it for general voir dire by the defense.

Individual Voir Dire:  In the Library (with the Candlestick?)

With general voir dire over, the jury selection process next transitioned over to individual voir dire.   This was not conducted in the cour room. Rather, the “qualified” jurors were left in the courtroom, and individual members were brought into the courthouse library for individual questioning.

Unfortunately, this part of the day’s proceedings was not broadcast, so I’ve no particular insight to share there.

TOMORROW: More LIVE Coverage of the Trial Proceedings

Join us tomorrow once again, for our LIVE coverage of the day’s proceedings.  I expect we’ll discover first thing just how far the court managed to get in jury selection, but they certainly appeared to make considerable progress today.

UPDATE: Between when I started writing this post and when it was published, media reports are that individual voir dire completed today off-camera, and opening statements will happen tomorrow morning!

OK, folks, that’s all I have for you on this topic, but we’ll be back with an end-of-day wrap-up post, as well.

Until next time:

Remember

You carry a gun so you’re hard to kill.

Know the law so you’re hard to convict.

Stay safe!

–Andrew

Attorney Andrew F. Branca
Law of Self Defense LLC

Nothing in this content constitutes legal advice. Nothing in this content establishes an attorney-client relationship, nor confidentiality. If you are in immediate need of legal advice, retain a licensed, competent attorney in the relevant jurisdiction.

 

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Comments

Mr Branca,

Do you have any comment on the alleged defense dustup between Barnes and the rest of the team?

It kinda sounds to me like Barnes was trying to run up a massive bill for his ‘jury selection experts’, and the defense simply wasn’t interested.

    Char Char Binks in reply to Olinser. | November 1, 2021 at 9:52 pm

    If so, Barnes was probably right. I’m surprised that so many prospective jurors are biased against Rittenhouse, but we saw the same with Chauvin, and even Zimmerman. We also know that these high profile cases are won or lost in jury selection.

    No, I don’t do drama. Also, my expertise is merely use-of-force law. If they all start shooting each other, call me. Otherwise, it has nothing to do with me.

    The Packetman in reply to Olinser. | November 2, 2021 at 6:24 am

    “It kinda sounds to me like Barnes was trying to run up a massive bill for his ‘jury selection experts’, …”

    Neither Barnes nor any of his team had, or were, going to charge a single penny; his comments about this are all on record.

    Grey_Man in reply to Olinser. | November 2, 2021 at 7:49 am

    Your assumption is beyond stupid.

The fact the defense was not able to get over easy humps and use voir dire as a educational device is troublesome. I know it can be tricky, but it has played well with me. Just keep everything in the form of a question. I hope the defense is not a “rote” attorney as opposed to a maestro.

    Olinser in reply to puhiawa. | November 1, 2021 at 9:36 pm

    I mean, in this case its a problem because the person in question is an idiot who THINKS they know what’s going on because of the GASP AR-15 ASSAULT WEAPON MACHINE GUN crap that the media has slung for too long.

    The problem is that the amount of time and specificity it would take to actually educate them on the issue is too much for this venue and would require them to delve into the actual facts of the case with regards to the firearm in question. They’ll most definitely be revisiting this in individual voir dire, and I’d be shocked if the defense didn’t strike her if she actually gets to the pool.

Colonel Travis | November 1, 2021 at 9:41 pm

People sometimes cringe at the idea of defending yourself on the stand because of the risk of cross, saying something inadvertently stupid, etc. One of the things stressed in Massad Ayoob’s MAG40 class is that if you are in a self-defense shooting, and your lawyer says, “Don’t worry, you won’t go on the stand” – that is not a compliment. He is saying you cannot stand up to cross examination.

In a self-defense case you must defend your actions. The lawyer believes this case is solid. That’s a great sign.

    Very few people can stand up to cross-examination. I know few lawyers who could do it, and those include lawyers who are the cross-examiners for a living.

      Colonel Travis in reply to Andrew Branca. | November 2, 2021 at 2:06 am

      Oh yes. I didn’t mean to imply the risk was minimal, and I cannot imagine being under the pressure of a trial like this. This is just a guess, but maybe Rittenhouse is still too young to fully grasp the weight of what’s going on? In your experience, perhaps you’ve seen that age doesn’t matter. I don’t know.

      Most people do not understand what it’s like to have massive opposition against you. In another life I experienced it to a degree, but nothing remotely like this. Let’s say you’re on trial and you see this on the complaint: The State of Wherever v. Me. Good Lord, that is daunting. The resources of the entire state going against you. Powerful people want you locked up for good and will do their damndest to make it happen, and they don’t need a legal defense fund to fuel them. The media hates your guts, millions of citizens hate your guts, the psychological and emotional toll, does it ever go away? Your life has changed forever no matter the outcome.

      I bet you’ve probably talked to Mas about lawyers themselves, how he’s observed that many of them are terrible when the table is turned on them!

Char Char Binks | November 1, 2021 at 9:55 pm

I hope the idea of putting a teen on the stand in his own defense is a bluff, or misdirection, and I hope it works.

If the jury is heavy Black, this kid will rot in jail

For all of you living in crime ridden blue state / blue city hell holes, both the prosecution and jury selection process here is key. The combo of the criminals doing whatever they want (which is sanctioned by politicians), a Soros prosecutor, and a highly left wing jury means you WILL be lynched if you unholster.

That is by design.

“There are few followers of the 10 Commandments who do not acknowledge a privilege to kill in lawful defense of innocent life, for example, or to kill in necessary combat in defense of one’s nation.”

You’d be surprised.

“More straightforward is the Presbyterian Church USA, whose Criminal Justice Program Director, Reverend Young, testified before Congress that: “The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church USA has declared in the context of handgun control and in many other contexts, that it is opposed to the killing of anyone, anywhere, for any reason.”

    Char Char Binks in reply to henrybowman. | November 1, 2021 at 11:04 pm

    Guided by mistranslation

    I said “few.” I didn’t say “none.” I doubt the Presbyterians have the same numbers as the Roman Catholics, globally speaking. Don’t forget South America.

    Dathurtz in reply to henrybowman. | November 2, 2021 at 7:09 am

    PCUSA is an apostate church. They cannot be classified as a group that accepts the ten commandments.

    If you would like to check out what actual believing Presbyterians affirm, check out the churches in NAPARC who, by and large, hold to the Westminster Confession of Faith.

      My sister joined a Prysb. church years ago because her husband was a member. She went for a few years before discovering the pastor was pro abortion. Found out during a sermon. Left and never went back.

        Dathurtz in reply to Mich. | November 2, 2021 at 12:31 pm

        You’ll see a lot worse than that. In my rural little town there is a PCUSA church that has a lesbian “pastor” that denies the divinity of Christ. I don’t quite get how that can be, but it is.

        Presbyterian just refers to the form of church governance, so you get a pretty wide range of particular beliefs in that label.

James B. Shearer | November 1, 2021 at 11:16 pm

Any comments on why jury selection in this case was so much faster than in the Arbery case?

    No idea. Not familiar with trials, but did serve as a juror in a couple of trials years ago. Maybe the individual players involved, the questions, etc. Maybe the grouping of 34, etc.

    An insight from being on a jury is that there will probably be a few people that will be able to persuade the rest. In the first trial I thought the guy was guilty, nobody else did, and when we came back the next morning everyone did. We didn’t know anything about him, but when we found out more about him, we felt better. In the second it was just a formal hearing to put away someone as a habitual criminal. It was sad, he seemed a very sympathetic figure, but the evidence was just about smacking you in the face. Just one juror that felt she was going to ruin his life by voting guilty, but thought he was. In the third, it was a guy already in jail for other things being tried for pushing drugs (1980s). He took the stand and was so obviously lying, everyone was laughing, even him.

    The only thing I know about juries, and this was years ago, was that Lutherans tend to convict, or so I read.

A female prospective juror (#10) had an interestingly ill-informed understanding of the 6th of the 10 Commandments. Although the 6th Commandment is commonly written out as “Thou shalt not kill,” it is more properly understood to mean that one shall not kill unlawfully. There are few followers of the 10 Commandments who do not acknowledge a privilege to kill in lawful defense of innocent life, for example, or to kill in necessary combat in defense of one’s nation.

Not ill-informed; just not the majority opinion. The view that violence against people is always wrong, even in self-defense, is held by some fairly significant Christian churches. My religion specifically rejects that view, declaring that “If someone is coming to kill you, get up early to kill him”. But the official teaching of Moravians, Mennonites, Amish, Quakers, J’s Witnesses, and a few other groups, is that it is better to be killed than to fight in self-defense. See, for instance, the Moravian massacre. So if this woman belongs to such a group, or agrees with them on this point, she’s not ill-informed at all.

    felixrigidus in reply to Milhouse. | November 2, 2021 at 3:29 am

    “Ill-informed” is merely a nice way of saying, truthfully, that she is wrong. That does not change because some sect falsely interprets the Ten Commandments in that way.
    Similarly, if there are large swaths of media telling you an AR-15 is a machine gun that doesn’t make it so.

    Andrew’s point is that this is not a mainstream Christian viewpoint, and it’s not . . as you acknowledge in your list of tiny little off-shoot Christian sects that make up less than zero percent of the population.

    The point here is not whether or not “thou shalt not kill” be taken literally in all circumstance but that this juror was correctly dismissed for cause.

    amicusets in reply to Milhouse. | November 2, 2021 at 8:18 am

    This discussion proves just how poorly our “education” system in this country has failed us all.

    Yes, any person can believe any thing they want and worship any god they choose to follow the commandments/ doctrines of their faith to their dying breath, but, and it’s a BIG BUT, they can’t hold or judge others to such belief systems in the course of their civic duties. There, in a jury, every person should recognize that the laws of the land are not the same as God’s law.

    Receiving respect and dignity to practice one’s religion necessitates that you also give respect and dignity to others that do not believe the way you do and also that you recognize that your beliefs are not the controlling law of the land.

    That said– I would much rather someone be honest in jury selection about their inability to be impartial against a defendant if they have ANY doubt whatsoever that they could be. I, however, have no problem with a juror being skeptical of the state– they should be, but sadly, instead most people are far more likely to “trust” the state and be skeptical of the defense because nobody wants believe that our “justice” system just might be crooked…

    greyfur in reply to Milhouse. | November 2, 2021 at 12:58 pm

    Actually, if you take a good close look at ‘thou shall not kill’ as it is written in the Old Testament in the Hebrew, the words used for that actually speak of laying in ambush for someone to take their life in order to take their goods. The whole idea there is to plot out someones murder in order to steal from them. But murder, generally speaking, plotted out maliciously.

    That being said, both Testaments clearly give one the right to defence of self, family and property. If you have to defend yourself from an attacker, or your property or family, and the attacker dies, their blood is not on your hands. They made a choice, and a bad one. You are not guilty of their blood.

    They, however, if they kill you, in the process of attacking you or stealing from you, even if by accident, not intending to kill you, are guilty of your blood.

    Sadly a lot of Christians don’t understand that they have the right to defend themselves and their families.

Regarding the defense suggesting Rittenhouse might testify, two things: you never know what might happen during the trial that might change the calculus, and most importantly, they want to suggest he might testify so that the prosecution has to burn time and resources preparing to cross examine him.

Capsaicin_Addict | November 2, 2021 at 7:55 am

Mr. Branca, a question.

Why is Rittenhouse charged with ‘reckless homicide’ in the case of Rosenbaum, but ‘intentional homicide’ in the case of Huber? Is there a difference? I’m not sure I grok if there is one, considering both were trying to attack/disarm Rittenhouse (and got shot for their efforts).

It is apparent the prosecutors are the only criminals in the courtroom who have brought false charges against Rittenhouse and are now engaged in a conspiracy to deny him a fair trial. They would love to turn this into a Stalinist type show trial;hopefully, the judge will not allow them to succeed. I would remind Juror #10 there is another Commandment that forbids bringing false witness against thy neighbor. Does she take that literally as well? Perhaps, that is really what this trial is all about. Rittenhouse’s conviction could be the spark that ignites a Second Revolution by convincing a huge number of armed American Patriots that self-defense is not a defense. Maybe not now,but the ChiCom agents masquerading as liberals are playing with fire.

I wish the press was on trial also.

The jury is who has to be convinced to do the right thing, to have some integrity, but it seems that many high profile cases are becoming so publicized and politicized that the price of integrity asked for by ordinary citizens may be becoming priceless. What does a juror get, 25 dollars a day and a disruption of his job/life? for what? The Derek Chauvin case shows they will do the thing that has the least amount of damage. Good people do not riot, they may become angry and frustrated, but they do not riot. The jury has to take not only the defendent, but everyone else interested in the case into account. It’s pretty well known that a not guilty verdict means either potential or real violence on a population of good folks that may have had their fill.

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