At least one shooting in Kenosha on Tuesday was captured by witness video. CBC News has edited the above video so as to not include moments depicting gunfire or any resulting injuries or deaths from gunfire.
Illinois police arrested a juvenile Wednesday after two people were shot to death during another night of Black Lives Matter protests in Kenosha, Wis.
Commander Norman Johnson of the Antioch Police Department said the suspect — a male whose name was not released because he is under 18 — was arrested on suspicion of first-degree intentional homicide.
Antioch is about 30 kilometres from Kenosha, which has seen three straight nights of unrest since the police shooting of a Black man, Jacob Blake.
Two people were shot to death and another was wounded during a third night of protests in Kenosha on Tuesday night, with violence breaking out shortly before midnight, the Kenosha Police Department said in a statement.
Sheriff David Beth said one victim was shot in the head and another in the chest, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. The third victim’s wounds were not believed to life-threatening.
WATCH l Clashes between protesters, police before shooting incidents:
It was not immediately clear if the suspect was being charged with one homicide or both.
According to witness accounts and video footage, police apparently let the young white man suspected of carrying out some or all of the shootings walk past them with a semi-automatic rifle over his shoulder as members of the crowd yelled for him to be arrested.
The Kenosha protests have drawn self-styled militias, patrolling the streets with rifles or standing guard to prevent looters or arsonists after significant damage to buildings have taken place.
“They’re like a vigilante group,” said Beth.
The FBI said it is assisting in the case.
Witnesses describe frantic scene
Cellphone video of at least two of the shootings Tuesday night that was posted online shows what appears to be a white man with a semi-automatic rifle jogging down the middle of a street as a crowd and some police officers follow him. Someone in the crowd can be heard asking, “What did he do?” and another person responds that the man had shot someone.
The man with the gun stumbles and falls, and as he is approached by people in the crowd, he fires three or four shots from a seated position, hitting at least two people, including one who falls over and another who stumbles away to cries of “Medic! Medic!”
A witness, Julio Rosas, 24, said that when the gunman stumbled and fell, “two people jumped onto him, and there was a struggle for control of his rifle. At that point during the struggle, he just began to fire multiple rounds and that dispersed people near him.”
“The rifle was being jerked around in all directions while it was being fired.”
In the cellphone footage, as the crowd scatters, the gunman stands up and continues walking down the street as police cars arrive. The man puts up his hands and walks toward the squad cars, with someone in the crowd yelling at police that the man had just shot someone, but several of the cars drive past him toward the people who had been shot.
Kenosha police, a separate agency from the sheriff’s office, asked for witnesses to come forward.
Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, who is Black, said in an interview with Democracy Now!, a non-profit organization that produces a daily news program for public radio and the web, that the shootings were not surprising and that white militias have been ignored for too long.
“How many times across this country do you see armed gunmen, protesting, walking into state capitols, and everybody just thinks it’s OK?” Barnes said. “People treat that like it’s some kind of normal activity that people are walking around with assault rifles.”
Request for National Guard troops made
Devin Scott, 19, told the Chicago Tribune he was in a group chanting “Black Lives Matter” when the gunfire began and that he tried unsuccessfully to revive one of the victims.
“This guy with this huge gun runs by us in the middle of the street and people are yelling, ‘He shot someone! He shot someone!’ And everyone is trying to fight the guy, chasing him, and then he started shooting again,” Scott said in the Tribune report.
Scott said he hit the ground during the next burst of gunfire, then tried to aid a person who was lying prone in the street.
“I was cradling him in my arms. I was trying to keep this kid alive, and he wasn’t moving or nothing. He was just laying there,” Scott said. “I didn’t know what to do and then this woman starts performing CPR. There was no pulse. I don’t think he made it.”
Anti-racism protesters also clashed with police in Portland, Ore., and Louisville, Ky., on Tuesday night, part of a wave of national protests that have continued since the May 25 death of a Black man in Minneapolis, George Floyd, who was pinned to the street under the knee of a white police officer.
Blake was hit by four of the seven shots and left paralyzed and “fighting for his life” in a Milwaukee hospital, his family and lawyers said on Tuesday, hours before the latest round of civil unrest.
During the encounter with police on Sunday, Blake broke free after struggling with police and walked away from them and around his car to the driver’s side. He appeared to be shot while opening the car door, according to a bystander video that went viral. Three of his young sons were in the car, witnesses said.
WATCH l More video emerges of police interaction with Jacob Blake:
On Tuesday, before the two deadly shootings, Kenosha County Board sent a letter to Democratic Gov. Tony Evers requesting that at least 2,000 more National Guard troops be sent. Evers initially dispatched 150 troops on Monday and increased that to 250 on Tuesday. On Wednesday, the board sent a second request, for 1,500 troops.
“Our county is under attack. Our businesses are under attack. Our homes are under attack. Our local law enforcement agencies need additional support to help bring civility back to our community,” board leaders wrote.