Syeda Saberi – News Editor
The shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha Wisconsin this past Sunday sparked an outburst of BLM protests in the area. Blake who remains paralyzed but is out of critical condition was shot 7 times in the back by officers as he was reaching into his vehicle.
State investigators explain that Blake was not cooperating with officers, placed one of them in a headlock, and had a knife in his possession which was recovered from the floorboard of his vehicle.
While Wisconsin authorities have not provided details of the account, Brendan Matthews, the Kenosha Police Association Attorney stated the following: “Mr. Blake was not unarmed. He was armed with a knife. The officers did not see the knife initially. The officers issued repeated commands for Mr. Blake to drop the knife. He did not comply.”
Amidst the protests following the shooting of Jacob Blake, two BLM protestors were fatally shot by a 17-year-old Illinoisan teenager named Kyle Rittenhouse, who drove to Wisconsin with an AR-15. Rittenhouse has been charged with intentional and reckless homicide as of this past Thursday. Several have commented on the account, including Michael German, a former FBI agent who has worked on several domestic terrorism cases and national security issues.
“Obviously, each circumstance will have its own surrounding facts that need to be addressed. But there’s no doubt that there’s a stark difference in the way law enforcement reacts to a white suspect vs. a Black suspect.” stated German. “They know there was a shooting, and there’s a person walking toward them with a rifle. It’s odd that they would not at least try to ascertain that person’s identity. He’s trying to surrender.”
The Wisconsin Police Association states that while video accounts of each incident are comparable, more investigation must be conducted to reach a fair conclusion.