KENOSHA, WI – Earlier this month, Wisconsin homicide suspect Kyle Rittenhouse was seen at a Mount Pleasant, WI bar wearing a “Free As Fuck” t-shirt. Prosecutors say the 18-year-old drank three beers, posed for photos with members of the Proud Boys, a white supremacist group, and flashed a ‘white power’ hand sign. They also say he was ‘serenaded’ by the proud boys with a theme song.
He wore no face covering, and was within 6 feet of other patrons, in direct violation of Wisconsin Department of Health Service guidelines
Rittenhouse, charged with murder last summer in Kenosha after he shot and killed two people at a racial injustice protest, is currently out on a $2 million dollar bond, secured mostly by donations – including substantial amounts from MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, as well as actor Ricky Schroder.
In a motion filed on Wednesday to restrict Rittenhouse’s bond, the Kenosha County District Attorney’s Office reference a January 5 visit to Pudgy’s Pub in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin. Rittenhouse visited the establishment shortly after pleading not guilty to Homicide charges.
Prosecutors filed the following bond modifications:
- The defendant shall be prohibited from possessing or consuming alcohol.
- The defendant shall not be present in any establishment where alcohol is served.
- The defendant shall be prohibited from making any public display of any “white power” or “white supremacy” signs, symbols, or hand gestures.
- The defendant shall have no contact with any known militia members or known members of any violent white power/white supremacist groups or organizations, including but not limited to the group identified as the “Proud Boys.”
They say Rittenhouse was at the bar for over an hour. After he posed for photos flashing an alt-right hand-symbol, Rittenhouse was photographed being served and drinking a beer. Prosecutors say he drank 3 beers in total in his visit to Pudgy’s.
Prosecutors also say Rittenhouse was ‘loudly serenaded’ by Proud Boys members – with the song “Proud of Your Boy”, written by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, which was originally intended for the Disney animated film Alladin.
Prosecutors argue Rittenhouse, 18, should be barred from possessing or consuming alcohol due to an increase in likelihood to commit violent, criminal acts.
They also say he should be restricted from associating with militia members, including Proud Boys. They say the group has advocated for violence, held extremist rallies, and have committed crimes, writing “The defendant’s continued association with members of a group that prides itself on violence, and the use of their symbols, raises the significant possibility of future harm. Further, this association may serve to intimidate potential witnesses, who may be unwilling to testify in this case because they may fear that the defendant’s associates [will] harm them or their families.”
Rittenhouse’s attorney issued the following statement:
- Mr. Rittenhouse does not object to a bond condition prohibiting the possession or consumption of alcohol.
- Mr. Rittenhouse is not currently and has not ever been a member of any of the organizations the State lists in its motion.
- The known complainants in this matter are all Caucasian males.
- The State has done an extensive search of all of Mr. Rittenhouse’s social media as part of its investigation in this case. Upon information and belief, no information linking Mr. Rittenhouse to the listed organizations has been found.
- Additionally, the State has presented no evidence of Mr. Rittenhouse visiting any of the listed organizations’ websites.
- The State’s bond motion is a not-so-thinly veiled attempt to interject the issue of race into a case that is about a person’s right to self-defense.
- Nonetheless, as Mr. Rittenhouse has no membership, affiliation, or affinity for any of the identified groups, the defense has no objection to a bond modification prohibiting Kyle Rittenhouse from having any knowing contact with any known hate groups or their members.
On March 10, Rittenhouse will return to Kenosha for his last pre-trial appearance.
SOURCE: NBC, WASHINGTON POST, KENOSHA COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, KENOSHA NEWS, USA TODAY, WISN MILWAUKEE, WSPD LOCAL 6, NBC 10 BOSTON, NPR