Kyle Rittenhouse: Victim’s father’s wrongful-death lawsuit can proceed


A wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the father of a man shot by Kyle Rittenhouse during protests in Kenosha, Wis., can move forward, a federal judge in Wisconsin ruled Wednesday.

Rittenhouse shot three men at an August 2020 racial justice protest, killing Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum. He was acquitted of all charges by a jury in 2021, but Huber’s father, John Huber, filed a civil lawsuit over his son’s death.

Rittenhouse’s lawyers had sought to dismiss the suit, arguing that Huber’s lawyers failed to properly serve him with a copy of the complaint and failed to show that he conspired with law enforcement and other individuals to inflict violence on protesters over the basis of his race.

“We do not agree that Mr. Huber has made any plausible claims against Kyle,” Shane P. Martin, Rittenhouse’s attorney, told The Washington Post in an interview Thursday. “Although this sentence allows the case to continue for the time being, it does not change the facts. … There was simply no conspiracy between Kyle and the Kenosha police to single out Anthony Huber, and as a jury has already found, Kyle’s actions that night were not unlawful and were taken in self-defense.

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Videos from Aug. 25 show Kyle Rittenhouse, who was charged with first-degree murder, interacting with law enforcement before and after the shootings. (Video: Elyse Samuels, Allie Caren/The Washington Post)

Rittenhouse appeared on the streets of Kenosha with an AR-style rifle in August 2020 saying he wanted to help protect businesses amid the unrest that followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake. But during brief confrontations, Rittenhouse shot and killed Rosenbaum, 36, and Huber, 26. He also shot and wounded Gaige Grosskreutz, then 26. Rittenhouse, who maintained he acted in self-defense, had faced a possible life sentence if convicted.

Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of all charges in the Kenosha manslaughter trial

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“[Yesterday’s] The sentence brings Anthony’s family one step closer to justice for their son’s unnecessary death,” Anand Swaminathan, an attorney representing Huber’s father, said in an email to The Post. “The demand will proceed to discovery, allowing full transparency on the events of that fateful and tragic evening.”

Huber’s suit names Rittenhouse, Kenosha County Sheriff David G. Beth, former Kenosha Police Department Chief Daniel G. Miskinis, acting Kenosha Police Chief Eric Larsen, the city of Kenosha and Kenosha County.

Attorneys for the law enforcement and government officials who were sued did not immediately respond to The Post’s messages seeking comment.

Rittenhouse’s attorneys argued that he was not properly served because he does not live in the Florida residence where his sister, who answered the door and received the court documents, and his mother live.

In her ruling Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman wrote that Huber’s attorneys have gone to great lengths to find Rittenhouse’s permanent residence in order to serve him court documents, while Rittenhouse was “deliberately cautious about his whereabouts.”

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Huber “hired three professional investigators who have spent more than 100 hours searching for Rittenhouse across the country,” Adelman wrote. “Rittenhouse, on the other hand, will almost certainly avoid service.”

He also rejected the defense’s contention that Huber’s lawyers did not adequately allege that Rittenhouse conspired with law enforcement on the evening of the protests.

There were celebrations and skirmishes outside the Kenosha County, Wis., courthouse on Nov. 19 as Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of all charges. (Video: James Cornsilk, Laura Dyan Kezman/The Washington Post, Photo: Joshua Lott/The Washington Post)

While some may find the conspiracy charge “difficult to believe,” Adelman wrote, this is not the time for the court to “weigh the evidence” or “decide whether the plaintiff is likely to prove his legations”.

“As long as the facts alleged by the plaintiff are not fantastical or delusional, the court must accept them as true,” Adelman wrote. “Deciding whether the allegations are true or false comes later in the case, after all parties have had an opportunity to present their evidence.”

Mark Guarino, Kim Bellware and Mark Berman contributed to this report.


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