THE teen gunman charged with murder after a triple shooting in Kenosha on Tuesday allegedly shot one man who had thrown a plastic bag at him.
Kyle Rittenhouse, 17, is alleged to have killed two people and injured a third while acting as a self-styled vigilante during the unrest that followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Sunday.
Prosecutors charged Rittenhouse, from Antioch, Illinois, on Thursday afternoon.
Included in the charges are one count of first-degree intentional homicide, one count of first-degree reckless homicide, one count of attempted first-degree intentional homicide, and two counts of first-degree reckless endangerment.
If convicted of first-degree intentional homicide, Rittenhouse could face a mandatory life sentence.
Rittenhouse allegedly opened fire Tuesday night during the protests and riots that came after Blake, a 29-year-old African-American, was shot seven times in the back during an arrest.
Rittenhouse is alleged to have killed Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum and injured another man in the arm.
Family and friends said Rosenbaum, 36, passed away from his injuries on Tuesday night.
He is reported to have been shot in the head.
Footage of the incident appears to show Rittenhouse being chased across the forecourt of a gas station before the shooting.
A man thought to be Rosenbaum can then be seen throwing a plastic bag after him.
Images from the aftermath of the shooting show a plastic bag on the floor nearby.
Rosenbaum is not thought to have been otherwise armed.
Witness statements provided to police suggested that Rosenbaum tried to "engage" Rittenhouse before the shooting and that Rittenhouse had been "trying to evade" Rosenbaum and others.
Rosenbaum – who is survived by his fiancée and a young daughter – is from Texas and moved to Kenosha within the last year, according to reports on social media.
Huber was the first shooting victim to be identified following the incident.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel noted that based on Wisconsin law, Rittenhouse is being charged as an adult.
The complaint stated that the teenager "fled the state of Wisconsin with the intent to avoid prosecution for that offense."
Rittenhouse was interviewed prior to the shootings by a journalist with conservative outlet The Daily Caller.
"People are getting injured and our job is to protect this business and part of my job is to also help people," Rittenhouse said.
"If there's somebody hurt, I'm running into harms way.
"That's why I have my rifle. Because I need to protect myself, obviously. But I also have my med kit."
The reporter said that a business they stood near had been lit on fire the previous night as riots raged.
Facebook has now said it is investigating a 3,000-member group called "Kenosha Guard", which reportedly promoted an event encouraging armed civilians to take to the streets to defend the city on Tuesday.
Photos and videos have also emerged to suggest that Rittenhouse had a strong admiration for law enforcement.
One picture, posted to the Facebook page of a local Public Safety Cadet Program in 2017, shows him posing in officer's uniform.
His own social media posts made frequent reference to Blue Lives Matter, a movement protesting the killing of police officers in the line of duty.
One image shows Rittenhouse sat front row at a Donald Trump rally at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa in January of this year.
A post from a now-deleted TikTok account believed to belong to the teen also included footage reportedly shot at the rally.
Rittenhouse is being held in the Lake County Juvenile Detention Center near Vernon Hills, CBS reported.
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