National Guard troops outside Kenosha are seen preparing for Kyle Rittenhouse verdict


National Guard troops were preparing for action Wednesday 60 miles north of Kenosha as the world waits for a verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse double murder case.

DailyMail.com watched as troops swung batons and practiced maneuvers with clear plastic shields at an Army National Guard battery in Sussex, Wisconsin.

As a watery sun shone down on the bleak, open field, some 25 guardsmen gathered around 10.30am preparing for whatever may happen on the streets of Kenosha once the verdict is brought in.

Secrecy has surrounded the exact whereabouts of the National Guard for ‘security purposes’ after Dairy State Governor Tony Evers activated them on Friday of last week.

They will not deploy to Kenosha unless local police say they are needed.

DailyMail.com saw as National Guard troops swung batons and practiced maneuvers with clear plastic shields at an Army National Guard battery in Sussex, Wisconsin, just 60 miles north of Kenosha

DailyMail.com saw as National Guard troops swung batons and practiced maneuvers with clear plastic shields at an Army National Guard battery in Sussex, Wisconsin, just 60 miles north of Kenosha 

National Guard troops are seen preparing for action Wednesday 60 miles north of Kenosha as the world waits for a verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse double murder case

National Guard troops are seen preparing for action Wednesday 60 miles north of Kenosha as the world waits for a verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse double murder case

The troops were seen preparing in Sussex at the headquarters of the 1st Battalion 121st field artillery, known as The Iron Brigade

The troops were seen preparing in Sussex at the headquarters of the 1st Battalion 121st field artillery, known as The Iron Brigade

About 25 guardsmen gathered around 10.30am preparing for whatever may happen on the streets of Kenosha once the jury comes to a verdict in Kyle Rittenhouse's murder trial

About 25 guardsmen gathered around 10.30am preparing for whatever may happen on the streets of Kenosha once the jury comes to a verdict in Kyle Rittenhouse’s murder trial

They will not deploy to Kenosha unless local police say they are needed and it will take the soldiers a little over an hour to reach Kenosha

They will not deploy to Kenosha unless local police say they are needed and it will take the soldiers a little over an hour to reach Kenosha

The governor of Wisconsin, Tony Evers, said on Monday that 500 Wisconsin Army National Guard troops are reporting for active duty to support local law enforcement agencies

The governor of Wisconsin, Tony Evers, said on Monday that 500 Wisconsin Army National Guard troops are reporting for active duty to support local law enforcement agencies

Rittenhouse, who was 17 at the time of the shootings, is charged with first-degree intentional homicide and other counts for killing Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and wounding Gaige Grosskreutz

Rittenhouse, who was 17 at the time of the shootings, is charged with first-degree intentional homicide and other counts for killing Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and wounding Gaige Grosskreutz 

But they could be clearly seen in Sussex at the headquarters of the 1st Battalion 121st field artillery, known as The Iron Brigade.

Evers called up 500 troops, many more than the 125 he initially deployed in Kenosha in August last year when riots broke out after Joseph Blake was shot seven times in the back and side, leaving him paralyzed.

Evers, a first-term Democrat, later brought in 125 more, but by then Kenosha, a city of 100,000 people, the fourth largest in the state, was ablaze.

It was during those disturbances, two days after Blake’s shooting, that Rittenhouse, then 17, shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and seriously injured Gaige Grosskreutz, 26.

The teen had traveled to Kenosha from his home in Antioch, Illinois with his AR-15 assault rifle. He claimed he was there to give medical assistance to anyone injured in the unrest and to protect property from rioters.

If the decision comes to deploy, it will take the soldiers a little over an hour to reach Kenosha.

The lakeside city is on edge again fearing the worst when the jury brings in its verdict against Rittenhouse. Whether he is found guilty on all charges, not guilty or a combination of the two, residents fear more violence is almost inevitable.

A supporter of Kyle Rittenhouse, left, argues with an activist in favor of conviction, right, in front of the Kenosha County Courthouse while the jury deliberates

A supporter of Kyle Rittenhouse, left, argues with an activist in favor of conviction, right, in front of the Kenosha County Courthouse while the jury deliberates

So far demonstrations have been muted with occasional minor skirmishes between supporters of Rittenhouse and those who believe he should be convicted

So far demonstrations have been muted with occasional minor skirmishes between supporters of Rittenhouse and those who believe he should be convicted 

Activists in Kenosha took a knee on Tuesday night, waiting for the jury to return on Wednesday morning and resume deliberations

Activists in Kenosha took a knee on Tuesday night, waiting for the jury to return on Wednesday morning and resume deliberations

So far demonstrations have been muted with occasional minor skirmishes between supporters of Rittenhouse and those who believe he should be convicted.

Tensions rose outside the court in Kenosha on Wednesday afternoon when a young man wearing a F**k Kyle T-shirt, Bart Simpson backpack, and Chicago Bulls beanie was arrested after scuffling with prominent Rittenhouse supporter Emily Cahill.

The two traded insults before the man threw a sign at Cahill. He and fellow anti-Rittenhouse protestors tried to wrestle the sign back and as he was being pulled off Cahill he sucker-punched one reporter in the jaw.

Other protestors tried unsuccessfully to lead the man away and calm him down, but he then went on to strike several other people — including a DailyMail.com photographer — before being pinned to the ground and hauled away in a paddywagon.

He was heard calling for his mom as the vehicle pulled away.

The flurry of violence came after supporters of both sides had been sharing pizza as they awaited the verdict for the second day.

Kenosha Police are seen detaining protesters following an incident outside the Kenosha County Courthouse

Kenosha Police are seen detaining protesters following an incident outside the Kenosha County Courthouse

Tensions rose outside the court in Kenosha on Wednesday afternoon when a young man wearing a F**k Kyle T-shirt, Bart Simpson backpack, and Chicago Bulls beanie was arrested after scuffling with prominent Rittenhouse supporter Emily Cahill

Tensions rose outside the court in Kenosha on Wednesday afternoon when a young man wearing a F**k Kyle T-shirt, Bart Simpson backpack, and Chicago Bulls beanie was arrested after scuffling with prominent Rittenhouse supporter Emily Cahill

One activist with a megaphone, wearing a Black Lives Matter hoodie, urged on his fellow protesters, chanting: ‘If Kenosha don’t get it, shut it down’.

He then began chanting: ‘Seven shots in the back’ — a reference to Blake’s shooting.

The jury in Rittenhouse’s case began their deliberations on Tuesday after an intense two-week trial.

Evers begged outsiders to either leave Kenosha before the verdict is handed down or protest peacefully. ‘I urge folks who are otherwise not from the area to please respect the community by reconsidering any plans to travel there and encourage those who might choose to assemble and exercise their First Amendment rights to do so safely and peacefully,’ the governor said.

Kenosha Police Department and the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department said they are monitoring the trial and are working with local and federal authorities to ensure the ‘safety of our communities.’

‘We recognize that there are varying opinions and feelings that revolve around the trial that may cause concerns,’ the two agencies said.

The troops could be clearly seen in Sussex at the headquarters of the 1st Battalion 121st field artillery

The troops could be clearly seen in Sussex at the headquarters of the 1st Battalion 121st field artillery

Secrecy has surrounded the exact whereabouts of the National Guard for 'security purposes' after Dairy State Governor Tony Evers activated them on Friday of last week

Secrecy has surrounded the exact whereabouts of the National Guard for ‘security purposes’ after Dairy State Governor Tony Evers activated them on Friday of last week

If the decision comes to deploy, it will take the soldiers a little over an hour to reach Kenosha

If the decision comes to deploy, it will take the soldiers a little over an hour to reach Kenosha

Evers called up 500 troops, many more than the 125 he initially deployed in Kenosha in August last year when riots broke out after Joseph Blake was shot seven times in the back and side, leaving him paralyzed

Evers called up 500 troops, many more than the 125 he initially deployed in Kenosha in August last year when riots broke out after Joseph Blake was shot seven times in the back and side, leaving him paralyzed

On Monday and Tuesday the courthouse saw demonstrators calling for Rittenhouse’s conviction, and supporters demanding his acquittal.

Protesters carried signs that read, ‘Know justice know peace,’ ‘Self-defense is not a crime,’ and ‘Racism kills.’

Their chants could be heard inside the courthouse.

Among them were Mark and Patricia McCloskey — the Missouri couple who hit the headlines when they stood outside their St Louis mansion armed with guns as Black Lives Matter protesters passed last summer. They pleaded guilty to misdemeanor gun charges and were later pardoned by Missouri’s Republican Governor Mike Parson.

Mark McCloskey is now running for the U.S. Senate, hoping to represent Missouri. Sitting Republican, Sen. Roy Blunt is retiring at the election next year.

‘We feel for Mr. Rittenhouse,’ Mark McCloskey told Fox News on Monday. ‘We feel he acted in self-defense.

‘We think he’s been politically prosecuted, as were we, and we’re hoping that the jury find him not guilty on all counts and that he can go home a free man.

‘Rittenhouse is a young man.

‘He was doing the best he could to help his country and to save businesses up here in Kenosha, and as his reward, he’s having the rest of his life threatened.’

The McCloskeys were outside the courthouse again on Tuesday.

Among Rittenhouse's supporters are Mark and Patricia McCloskey — the Missouri couple who hit the headlines when they stood outside their St Louis mansion armed with guns as Black Lives Matter protesters passed last summer

Among Rittenhouse’s supporters are Mark and Patricia McCloskey — the Missouri couple who hit the headlines when they stood outside their St Louis mansion armed with guns as Black Lives Matter protesters passed last summer

The McCloskeys were outside the courthouse again on Tuesday and were confronted by Black Lives Matter activists

The McCloskeys were outside the courthouse again on Tuesday and were confronted by Black Lives Matter activists 

'Maserati Mike' gets out of his black Maserati at Kenosha courthouse on Wednesday. He was the first protester there and chanted through his megaphone 'Black Lives Matter is a terrorist organization'

‘Maserati Mike’ gets out of his black Maserati at Kenosha courthouse on Wednesday. He was the first protester there and chanted through his megaphone ‘Black Lives Matter is a terrorist organization’

Another demonstrator known as ‘Maserati Mike’ turned up in his eponymous black sports car late on Tuesday, carrying a megaphone and wearing thin-rimmed glasses and a bow-tie.

‘Black Lives Matter is a terrorist organization,’ he chanted, before being told by cops to put his gun away.

‘That subject was talked to by officers, and the situation was resolved. The man put his rifle away voluntarily. We did not take any further action,’ Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department told DailyMail.com.

He complied, then left the court in his sportscar.

Residents of Kenosha are still braced for unrest and business owners are recruiting their own private security, requesting that they be armed but unobtrusive.

They are said to be paying up to $100 an hour per security guard with many former Kenosha cops picking up the work to provide 24/7 security. 

‘No matter which way the verdict goes, somebody is going to be upset,’ said Lyna Postuchow, owner of A Summer’s Garden, a floral shop.

She told NBC News: ‘You always have to be ready because you don’t know what’s going to happen, but we hope cooler minds prevail.’

Last summer saw her store smashed during the violence following Blake’s shooting, and $10,000 worth of damage was done.

‘Nobody wants a repeat of last summer. Those were not Kenosha people. That’s not who caused us damage,’ Postuchow said.

Kyle Rittenhouse's defense team made a new request for a mistrial Wednesday

Kyle Rittenhouse’s defense team made a new request for a mistrial Wednesday

Judge Bruce Schroeder listens as attorneys argue about items that could be considered for a mistrial during Kyle Rittenhouse's trial

Judge Bruce Schroeder listens as attorneys argue about items that could be considered for a mistrial during Kyle Rittenhouse’s trial

Gus Harris, owner of Flex & Burn Fitness Center, said he plans to board up his gym like he did in the summer of 2020.

‘Obviously, we’re concerned. Definitely,’ he told NBC.

Some were waiting to see which way the jury went, and how the crowd reacted, before deciding whether to board up their stores.

Mike Lampos, owner of the downtown bar Fec’s Place, said: ‘Our city is on the line. Either way, you’re going to have people who are unhappy. Only half will be happy about the outcome. The other half are the people who are coming,’ to possibly damage businesses, he said.

‘I wouldn’t say I’m not concerned, but I’m not as worried as I was. I’m not boarding up,’ he continued. ‘Well, if this were to turn into something we had last year and buildings are burning, I’ve got my boards ready. I could board up in an hour.’

Anne Benson, owner of Oliver’s Bakery, agreed.

‘Do I have my boards? Yes, I do. Do I want to put them up? No, I don’t,’ she said, speaking to NBC affiliate TJM4.

‘I’m not sure what’s going to happen. All I’m going to do is stay positive.’

John Fox, a 61-year-old Kenosha resident who lived near the scene of the 2020 protests and previously represented the business district as an alderman, said he was deeply worried.



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