Statement from members of the Common Council: Alderwoman Milele A. Coggs, Alderman Ashanti Hamilton, Alderman Nik Kovac, Alderwoman Nikiya Dodd, Alderman Khalif J. Rainey, Alderwoman JoCasta Zamarripa, Alderwoman Chantia Lewis, Alderman José G. Pérez, Alderwoman Marina Dimitrijevic, and Alderman Russell W. Stamper, II
During the last two weeks, all eyes were on Wisconsin and the court case that was unfolding in Kenosha involving Kyle Rittenhouse. What happened that night in August 2020 was sad and disheartening, and while we cannot change what has already been done, we can expect the proper justice to be delivered for the families of those who lost their lives, and those who were endangered.
That is what makes today’s decision so upsetting.
The demonstrations and protests calling for equality, growth, and reform of our police and justice systems were not falling on deaf ears. Steadily, our community, and many across the country have been enacting change. Yet, we cannot help but feel that the verdict rendered today is two steps back after one step forward.
We hope that the decision made today does not send a message about when it is permissible to take someone’s life and that as similar court cases take place in other areas, that this is not the start of a trend of vigilantes who commit acts of violence, only not to be held accountable.
To our constituents: Know that progress cannot be pushed backward, and, although today’s verdict was a reminder of the fact that the road toward justice is long and winding, we are committed and will continue to work to make our city a place that is welcoming, just and equitable for everyone.