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Negligence claims filed in Rittenhouse shootings amid Kenosha protests

Gaige Grosskreutz, who was seriously wounded, and the parents of Anthony Huber, who was killed, have each filed $10 million claim notices with both the city of Kenosha and Kenosha County.

Kyle Rittenhouse sits while listening during an extradition hearing in Lake County court Friday, Oct. 30, 2020, in Waukegan.
Kyle Rittenhouse at an extradition hearing in Lake County court Oct. 30 in Waukegan.
AP file

KENOSHA, Wis. — Claims filed on behalf of two men shot by an Illinois teen during a night of protests over a police shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin, allege the city and Kenosha County were negligent in their response to the unrest.

Gaige Grosskreutz, who was seriously wounded, and the parents of Anthony Huber, who was killed, have each filed $10 million claim notices with both the city and county. The notices usually are precursors to lawsuits filed against local governments.

Grosskreutz and Huber were shot by 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse on Aug. 25 during violent protests that followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man who was left partially paralyzed when a white officer fired numerous shots into his back as police tried to arrest him.

Rittenhouse, who is now 18, is charged with five felonies, including first-degree intentional homicide. He claims he fired his assault-style rifle in self-defense.

Grosskreutz’s attorney, Kimberly Motley, says the actions, or inactions, by police and sheriff’s deputies are tied to the shootings.

Motley said the claims lack details typically found in civil suits because the plaintiffs don’t want to interfere with the ongoing prosecution of Rittenhouse, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

Rittenhouse, of Antioch, Illinois, is free on $2 million bail while awaiting trial.

Prosecutors allege Rittenhouse, who is white, left his home in Antioch and traveled to Kenosha after learning of a call for militia to protect businesses in that city on Aug. 25. Kenosha was in the throes of several nights of chaotic street demonstrations.

Rittenhouse opened fire with an assault-style rifle during the protest that night, killing Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and wounding Gaige Grosskreutz. Rittenhouse has argued he fired in self-defense.

The city of Kenosha is preparing for protests when a charging decision comes in the police shooting of Blake, officials said Sunday. A decision is expected within the next two weeks.

Blake was discharged from a Milwaukee hospital in October and was undergoing treatment at an Illinois rehabilitation clinic.

“He’s doing well,” Blake’s uncle Justin Blake told the Associated Press. “He’s getting mentally stronger and physically stronger. ... He’s still paralyzed. He’s entering therapy at a rehab center, trying to get his strength and body in whatever best condition that is to push forward.”