Defense says extraditing Antioch teen would 'turn him over to mob'

  • Antioch resident Kyle Rittenhouse carries a weapon as he walks along Sheridan Road in Kenosha, Wis., on Aug. 25, the night he shot and killed two protesters and injured a third. His attorneys have argued he was acting in self-defense.

    Antioch resident Kyle Rittenhouse carries a weapon as he walks along Sheridan Road in Kenosha, Wis., on Aug. 25, the night he shot and killed two protesters and injured a third. His attorneys have argued he was acting in self-defense. Adam Rogan/The Journal Times

 
By KATIE FOODY
Associated Press
Updated 10/8/2020 7:15 PM

Extraditing a 17-year-old accused of killing two protesters in Kenosha would "turn him over to the mob" in Wisconsin, defense attorneys argued in court records Thursday.

Kyle Rittenhouse was arrested at his home in Antioch, a day after he shot and killed two protesters and injured a third on the streets of Kenosha on Aug. 25. He has been held in Illinois since then.

 

Attorneys for Rittenhouse argued in the document filed in Lake County court late on Thursday that he was acting in self-defense and that handing him over to Wisconsin authorities would violate his constitutional rights. They also argue that Wisconsin prosecutors and Illinois authorities didn't follow legal technicalities required for extradition.

Extradition is typically a straightforward process, and legal experts have expressed doubt that Rittenhouse's attorneys could prevent it.

The document echoes attorneys' previous portrayal of Rittenhouse as a courageous patriot who was exercising his right to bear arms during unrest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake, who is Black.

"The premature and unsupported charges are contributing to unwarranted public condemnation," defense attorneys wrote. "Rittenhouse has been publicly branded a 'mass murderer,' a 'terrorist,' a 'racist,' and more."

Rittenhouse is due back in court today, but a Lake County judge is not expected to immediately make a decision on the extradition issue.

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