Gaige Grosskreutz, the lone survivor of three people shot by Rittenhouse on Aug. 25, 2020, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, said it was an “emotional” experience seeing Rittenhouse, 18, testify in his defense on Wednesday, November 10. He believes the teen’s dramatic outburst at his murder trial was primarily about being “upset that he was caught” for the shootings.
Following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, protestors filled the streets of Kenosha for a week.
On the stand, Rittenhouse cried uncontrollably, leading the judge to call a recess at one point. Before his fatal encounters with Anthony Huber, 26, and Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, he testified that he was guarding private property in Kenosha and providing first aid.
“To me, it seemed like a child who just gotten caught doing something that he wasn’t supposed to—more upset that he was caught and less upset about what he had done and what he had taken and the numerous lives that he affected through his actions that night,” Grosskreutz said on “Good Morning America.”
According to New York Post, Grosskreutz’s lawyer, Kimberly Motley, said Rittenhouse’s testimony that he acted in self-defense was “inconsistent” with what happened on the night of Aug. 25, 2020.
“People need to pay attention to the inconsistent statements from the … defendant.”
However, legal experts argue that Grosskreutz’s testimony contradicts that argument.
As New York Times reported, Grosskreutz was armed that night, and he was questioned about why he told police detectives shortly after the shooting that his Glock pistol had fallen out of its holster, rather than claiming he had pulled it out, as evidence showed.
He also admitted under questioning that he was carrying the gun secretly without a valid permit and that he had turned down a police request to question him about the shootings in September 2020.
“So when you were standing three to five feet from him with your arms up in the air, he never fired, right?” Corey Chirafisi, a defense lawyer, asked.
“Correct,” Mr. Grosskreutz said.
“It wasn’t until you pointed your gun at him, advanced on him with your gun—now your hands down, pointed at him—that he fired, right?” Mr. Chirafisi said.
“Correct,” he answered.
On the other hand, Grosskreutz’s statement strengthens the defense’s argument that Rittenhouse acted in self-defense, according to a defense attorney and former New York City prosecutor, Julie Rendelman.
“It’s hard to imagine that someone pulls out a gun, unholsters it, points it and then says they didn’t intend to point it,” she stated.
“But the important thing is what’s in the mind of Rittenhouse. And if you follow the law, you know, they have to decide whether Rittenhouse believed he was in peril and whether the belief was reasonable under the circumstances.”
Rendelman continued: “He’s not expected to read the mind of the person pointing the gun at him and go, ‘Oh, he didn’t intend to point it at me, so I can’t shoot him.'”