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Judge in Rittenhouse trial throws out misdemeanor dangerous weapon charge as closing arguments begin

The misdemeanor charge seemed to be among the most likeliest for which prosecutors will get a conviction

Published: November 15, 2021 12:38pm

Updated: November 15, 2021 12:53pm

The Wisconsin judge at Kyle Rittenhouse's murder trial Monday dismissed a count of possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18.

The misdemeanor charge seemed to be among the most likely for which prosecutors will get a conviction, according to the Associated Press

Rittenhouse, then 17, killed two men and wounded a third in the summer of 2020 during a turbulent protest against racial injustice in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The judge's ruling came as he gave jury instructions Monday morning, explaining the charges and the laws of self-defense .The two side in the early afternoon began delivering closing arguments.

The most serious charge against Rittenhouse, now 18, is first-degree intentional homicide.

There is no dispute that Rittenhouse was 17 when he carried an AR-style semi-automatic rifle on the streets of Kenosha and used it.

But the defense argued that Wisconsin law has an exception related to the length of a weapon’s barrel. Prosecutors argued that the defense was misreading the statute. Judge Bruce Schroeder had twice sided with prosecutors earlier in declining to dismiss the charge, but he also said the law was confusingly written, the wire service also reports. 

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