Brief

Rittenhouse disappears, prosecutors seek to rearrest and increase bond

By: - February 4, 2021 12:38 pm
Kenosha County Jail

Kyle Rittenhouse was released from the Kenosha County Jail on Nov. 20. (Photo: Kenneth C. Zirkel CC BY-SA 4.0

Kenosha County prosecutors sought an arrest warrant and filed to increase the bond of an Illinois teen accused of killing two and wounding another at protests in Kenosha last summer after he went off the radar. 

Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, had given an Antioch, Ill. address to the Kenosha County Circuit Court where he faces several felony charges, including two counts of first-degree reckless homicide. When court officials attempted to send mail to that address, it bounced back as undeliverable. 

In response, prosecutors requested that Rittenhouse’s bond be increased by $200,000. The bond was initially set at $2 million and was paid for through donations from conservative figures, including MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell

The source of Rittenhouse’s bond money made him a flight risk, according to prosecutors, because the money wasn’t his or his family’s and didn’t give him an incentive to remain in the area. 

“It is important to note that the $2 million came from a dubious Internet fundraising campaign, and the defendant and his family did not post any money toward that bond,” Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger wrote in his motion. “As a result, the defendant is free from custody with minimal incentive to comply with his bond conditions. He posted no money so he has no financial stake in the bond. He is already facing the most serious possible criminal charges and life in prison, so in comparison, potential future criminal penalties are insignificant.”

Rittenhouse’s legal team responded by saying he was staying in a “safe house” with his family and private security because of threats they’ve received. 

Rittenhouse’s bond has already been modified by a judge once after he was seen, on the day of his arraignment, at a Racine County bar drinking beer with men flashing hand signs associated with white supremacists. 

After that public appearance, Rittenhouse was forbidden from drinking alcohol or associating with known members of militias or hate groups. 

Rittenhouse is next scheduled to appear in court for a final pre-trial conference on March 10.

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Henry Redman
Henry Redman

Henry Redman is a staff reporter for the Wisconsin Examiner who focuses on covering Wisconsin's towns and rural areas. He previously covered crime and courts at the Daily Jefferson County Union. A lifelong Midwesterner, he was born in Cleveland, Ohio and graduated from Loyola University Chicago with a degree in journalism in May 2019.

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