Rittenhouse’s friend, Dominick Black, testifies on the first day of trial
More testimony is expected from prosecution witnesses this Wednesday morning as the Kyle Rittenhouse trial in Kenosha moves into its third day.
Following opening statements yesterday by Kenosha County Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger and defense lawyer Mark Richards, the state began calling people to the witness stand. Prosecution is trying to challenge Rittenhouse's claim that he acted in self-defense when he killed two men and wounded a third during protests last year following Kenosha police wounding a Black man, Jacob Blake, Jr.
The first witness on the stand was Rittenhouse’s friend Dominick Black.
Black also carried a rifle on the night of the shootings as he joined the defendant in helping protect a used car lot. Black said unlike Rittenhouse, he decided to be stationed on the company's roof.
"I kind of didn't want to be in the mix of a lot of problems. I didn't want to get hurt. I didn't want to cause any problems. [I] figured it would be a lot safer up on top [of the building],” said Black.
Prosecution suggests Rittenhouse could have avoided deadly use of force against some people he encountered on the street by being on the roof. But under cross-examination from defense lawyer Mark Richards, Black said one of the leaders of their group of armed civilians had other plans for Rittenhouse.
“Nick Smith said no, he wanted Kyle on the ground because he's a medic and can provide services, correct?” Richards asked.
“Yes,” Black responded.
“You saw Kyle fix somebody's hand who had a big gash in it?” Richards asked.
“Yes," Black said.
Black faces felony charges of his own for allegedly buying Rittenhouse, then 17-years-old, a high-powered rifle. But under cross-examination from Richards, Black denied agreeing to a deal with the district attorney's office to keep him out of prison in return for testifying.
“There's no really assuming what I get out of this” Black said.
“There hasn't been any promises. I'm asking what you're hoping,” Richards said.
“I'm hoping for the best I get. I don't know what it is,” Black responded.
Kyle Rittenhouse faces life in prison if convicted on one of the homicide charges.