Sept. 1: Trump Visit Draws Supporters, Critics; Bucks Players Upset With WI Legislature's Inaction

Sep 1, 2020

Anger over the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man, on Aug. 23 continues to spill into the streets of Kenosha, Wis. On Aug. 25, an Illinois teenager allegedly shot and killed two protesters and severely injured another. The city has become the nation's latest flashpoint during a summer of unrest and calls for racial justice.

>>Find all of WUWM's Kenosha protest coverage here.

Find previous days' coverage here:

>>Monday, Aug. 31
>>Friday, Aug. 28
>> Thursday, Aug. 27

>> Wednesday, Aug. 26
>> Tuesday, Aug. 25
>> Monday, Aug. 24
>> Sunday, Aug. 23

WUWM is providing updates as events unfold and information on the incident is released.

4:36 p.m.: Bucks Players Upset With Wisconsin Legislature's Inaction

Milwaukee Bucks players and the team's coach said Tuesday they were disappointed that the Wisconsin Legislature didn't take action on policing reform bills during a special session Monday called by Gov. Tony Evers.

“Surely there are things to talk about right now, right?” Bucks guard Kyle Korver said at a Zoom session Tuesday from Lake Buena Vista, Fla., where the NBA playoffs are taking place. “Surely there are things our state needs leadership in. How can we be better?”

He called the Legislature's inaction “disappointing.”

Democrats urged Republicans who control the Legislature to take up the bills, but both the state Senate and Assembly met for less than 30 seconds each before ending the session. Republican leaders gave no indication when they may reconvene. Republican Speaker Robin Vos touted a task force he created, while Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald suggested there would be dozens of bills to consider in the months ahead.

The Bucks led an NBA walkout that stopped playoff games last week to express their frustration with the police shooting of Jacob Blake and acts of racial injustice. 

Korver said the team is trying to “stand in the middle” politically.

“We’re trying to partner with the other teams in the state in saying how can we be leaders because we need leadership in our state and in our country,” Korver said. “We need leadership that is standing for the people. We need this right now. And we’re not getting it. We don’t want to be pulled one way or another. We’re learning on the fly how to try to be in the middle, and it’s tough, right? But that’s our heart. And I hope everyone knows that in Wisconsin.”

Bucks forward Khris Middleton, who is Black, said the team wants to keep bringing awareness to social justice issues. Middleton said he hoped the Wisconsin Legislature would "do the right thing for the people, and just bring people together.”

Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said he too was disappointed in the Legislature.

“At the end of the day, it feels like there’s work to be done, and they’re not doing it,” he said. "It doesn’t seem like we’re getting governing from the people that were elected, whether they be Republican or Democrat, in Wisconsin.”

- Associated Press

3:40 p.m.: Trump Visits Kenosha, Drawing Supporters And Critics

President Donald Trump visited Kenosha Tuesday afternoon, nine days after local police severely wounded a Black man, Jacob Blake. Several nights of violent protests in the city followed.

WUWM spoke with Trump supporters and critics along the president's motorcade route.

Jan McMahon says it's a “scary feeling” to have civil unrest in Kenosha, and she's says the president's visit is important.

"Some of the politicians, you're just not sure of, and with him coming here, he's giving us a message. He's got our back!” she said.

But the president coming to Kenosha sends a far different message to Dee Riley.

"It ain't going to do nothing but make the city more crazy," Riley said.

Kenosha's mayor and Wisconsin's governor had urged the president to postpone his visit.

While in the city, Trump viewed damage that occurred during the protests and met with law enforcement.

Read more about Trump's Kenosha visit.

- Chuck Quirmbach, Maayan Silver, Joy Powers

3:32 p.m.: Wisconsin Investigators: 28 Videos Reviewed Related To Jacob Blake Shooting

The Wisconsin Department of Justice says it has reviewed 28 videos related to the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha.

Only two cellphone videos that captured the Aug. 23 shooting have been widely distributed over social media. The state Justice Department did not describe what was seen on any of the videos. Kenosha police do not have body cameras.

A police officer shot Blake seven times in the back. Blake’s family says the 29-year-old Black man is paralyzed.

The Justice Department said Tuesday that it also issued four search warrants and collected more than 100 piece of evidence, but did not give any further details.

The update from the agency came as President Donald Trump visited Kenosha to view damage from unrest that followed the shooting.

- Associated Press

9:46 a.m.: Kenosha Unrest Causes $2 Million In Damage To City-Owned Property

Damage to city-owned property from violence that erupted over the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha is estimated at nearly $2 million so far, a city official said.

The city's public works director, Shelly Billingsley, provided the estimate to local leaders Monday night on what it would cost to replace garbage trucks, street lights and traffic signals, among other things that were destroyed or damaged in the unrest over the last week.

The estimate was made as some Kenosha residents fear Tuesday's planned visit by President Donald Trump may stir more emotions and cause more violence and destruction in the southeastern Wisconsin city after several days of peace. Others, however, welcomed the president’s trip.

Mayor John Antaramian has said the city will request $30 million in aid from the state to help rebuild in the aftermath of the unrest. Some of the city's garbage trucks, which were parked downtown to provide security and limit movement by protesters, were set on fire during the demonstrations.

Gov. Tony Evers announced Tuesday that Kenosha businesses that were damaged due to the unrest will be eligible for up to $20,000 each in no-interest loans to assist with repairs. According to a press release, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has "allocated up to $1 million in Disaster Recovery Microloan Program funding to assist these businesses."

Billingsley said they were insured and that city staff is working with the insurance company to log damage information, the Kenosha News reported. Some of the trucks, which had functioned as snow-plow vehicles in the winter, were also destroyed.

Billingsley said she hoped that the setback would not affect snow plow operations this winter. She told the Public Works Committee the COVID-19 pandemic and other factors could affect the timeline in obtaining the new trucks.

City staff continues to compile numbers from the damage, Billingsley said.

- Associated Press, Lauren Sigfusson

9:35 a.m.: Trump To Meet Kenosha Law Enforcement, Tour Damage On Tuesday  

President Trump is scheduled to visit Kenosha on Tuesday. He’s expected to meet with local law enforcement and tour businesses damaged during recent unrest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake.

Protests are planned during the president's visit. But Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth says Trump will be protected.

"The president is going to be, hopefully, quite safe here. That's our goal,” Beth says.

The leader of Wisconsin's National Guard says 1,500 soldiers are in Kenosha, including some from three other states.

Democrats say Trump has used his office to fan the flames of chaos and division, leaning into violence as a political strategy.

- Chuck Quirmbach