BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Dozens of people formed a protest outside the Park Street MBTA Station on the Boston Common Saturday to voice their opposition to the Kyle Rittenhouse not guilty verdict. The event was planned by a group called “Refuse Fascism New England.”
On Friday, 17-year-old was acquitted of all charges after pleading self-defense in a deadly Kenosha shooting that killed two people.READ MORE: December Weather Preview: Could Boston Have A White Christmas?
Scott Gilbert, the New England representative for “RefuseFascism.org”, helped organize the protest.
“What people need to understand is that this Kyle Rittenhouse verdict is much, much more than just about that verdict. It was a green light given by the court system to say it’s open season to go after anyone that opposes their agenda,” said Gilbert. “Everyone from Black and brown people of color, to women fighting for their rights to control their body, to immigrants being attacked and killed at the border. Most importantly, against protestors who protest anything of their agenda.”
Rittenhouse had been charged with homicide, attempted homicide and reckless endangering after killing two men with an AR-style semi-automatic rifle. A third person was also wounded.
It all happened during a night of protests over police violence against Black people in the summer of 2020. The anonymous jury deliberated for about 3 1/2 days.
Rittenhouse was 17 when he went from his home in Antioch, Illinois, to Kenosha after businesses in the city were ransacked and burned over the shooting of a Black man, Jacob Blake, by a white police officer.READ MORE: Coronavirus In Massachusetts: Today's Developments
Carrying a weapon that authorities said was illegally purchased for the underage Rittenhouse, he joined other armed citizens in what he said was an effort to protect property and provide medical aid.
During the protest, Gilbert read a statement from the John Huber, the father of Anthony Huber, who was one of the men that was shot and killed by Rittenhouse.
“Make no mistake. Our fight to hold those responsible for Anthony’s death accountable continues in full force,” Gilbert read in John’s words.
In a statement on Friday, President Joe Biden said that everyone “must acknowledge that the jury has spoken.”
Gilbert said he was disappointed with Biden’s remarks.
“When President Biden says he accepts the verdict, he wants us all to just be happy and go home,” said Gilbert. “By not standing up to this verdict, the Democratic leadership and Joe Biden are saying, ‘It’s ok.’ And that is wrong.”MORE NEWS: COVID Booster Demand 'Skyrocketing' In Massachusetts
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