Prosecutors in Wisconsin filed documents on Wednesday demanding Judge Bruce Schroeder issue a new arrest warrant for Kyle Rittenhouse after learning he no longer resides at the home on file per the advisement of police, according to The Associated Press.
Mark Richards, the lawyer for Rittenhouse, also made alarming claims in his response to prosecutors, telling the court that unnamed police officers were the ones who told Rittenhouse and his lawyers not to disclose their true address to the court.
During a hearing on Wednesday, angry Kenosha County prosecutors said Rittenhouse, who allegedly killed two people on video during a protest against the police shooting of Jacob Blake last year, had moved out of the Antioch, Illinois home he listed in his court documents and did not notify authorities. Rittenhouse’s lawyer defended the 18-year-old’s right to disobey court orders, telling the judge that he had to move to a “safe house” because of alleged death threats.
But prosecutors have been incensed by Rittenhouse’s cavalier attitude since Republican leaders and conservative activists put money together to cover his $2 million bail.
“He posted no money so he has no financial stake in the bond. He is already facing the most serious possible criminal charges and life in prison, so in comparison, potential future criminal penalties are insignificant,” prosecutors wrote in their filing, noting how unusual it was for a murder suspect to be allowed this level of freedom.
WISN12 News obtained the court documents. The lawyers told the judge that Rittenhouse “demonstrated his carefree attitude by going to a bar immediately after his arraignment on Jan. 5, 2021, and drinking three beers in the company of known ‘Proud Boys,’ while flashing white supremacist signs and wearing a ‘Free as (expletive) shirt.”
— Derrick Rose (@DRoseTV) February 3, 2021
Prosecutors said anyone who moves away from their listed address has to notify the court within 48 hours, and Rittenhouse did not. They asked the judge to add $200,000 to his original bail in addition to issuing a new arrest warrant.
Richards said he offered to give prosecutors his new address as long as it was kept confidential, something prosecutors refused.
But prosecutors say they only found out Rittenhouse moved when a court order mailed to his Illinois home was returned on Jan. 28. Detectives then went to the house, according to the Associated Press, and found that Rittenhouse had moved out in December.
Richard also made alarming claims in his response to prosecutors, telling the court that unnamed police officers were the ones who told Rittenhouse and his lawyers not to disclose their true address to the court.
He later provided documents to legal news site Law & Crime showing that Rittenhouse’s previous lawyer, John M. Pierce, was “directly informed by a high-ranking member of the Kenosha Police Department not to provide the address of the Rittenhouse safe house because of the numerous threats made against Kyle and his family.”
“While I was completing [the bond] form, I was approached by a Kenosha Police Department Captain, who offered his assistance. I asked the Kenosha Police Captain what address to put on the form. The Kenosha Police Captain told me that I ‘absolutely should not‘ provide the address of the physical location of the Rittenhouse Safe House on the form, but to instead provide his home address in Antioch, Illinois,” Pierce wrote in the motion provided to Law & Crime.
Rittenhouse became a star among conservatives and Republicans after he shot Joseph Rosenbaum, Anthony Huber and Gaige Grosskruetz during the demonstrations in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Only Grosskruetz survived and Rittenhouse has been charged with multiple counts of homicide and attempted homicide after he was seen on video shooting randomly into the crowd of protesters.
His case drew further outrage when videos showed him coordinating with police before the shooting and walking past multiple officers after killing Rosenbaum and Huber. Police officers even gave him water before he opened fire on the crowd, according to USA Today.
He went to the protest after white supremacist Facebook pages asked their followers to drive to Wisconsin to attack those demonstrating against the shooting of Blake, who was paralyzed after an officer shot him in the back multiple times.
The incident prosecutors cited in their filing references the outrage that grew after Rittenhouse was seen happily enjoying his time at a bar with his mom and members of the white supremacist group Proud Boys after he was released from jail.
In videos from the incident that went viral, Rittenhouse is seen flashing white supremacist hand signs and taking photos with people in the bar. He was with his mother at the bar so he was allowed to drink, according to Wisconsin law.
After that video, the judge in the case ordered Rittenhouse to refrain from any contact with white supremacists, according to the Associated Press.
The judge changed the terms of his release, writing that Rittenhouse “shall not knowingly have conduct with any person or group of persons known to harm, threaten, harass or menace others on the basis of their race, beliefs on the subject of religion, color, national origin, or gender.”
Rittenhouse’s next court appearance is on March 10, and he is facing life in prison if convicted, according to WISN12.