Kenosha Police Chief: Officer Who Shot Jacob Blake Has Returned to Duty and Will Not Face Disciplinary Actions
I hope there won’t be more riots.
The Kenosha, Wisconsin police officer who shot Jacob Blake, a black man, seven times and was paralyzed from the waist down during a fight Blake started with police last summer, is now back on the job.
Multiple investigations conducted over the incident have cleared Officer Rustin Sheskey of any wrongdoing according to the Kenosha Police Department’s Chief Daniel Miskinis, and he has returned to duty.
In a statement given on Tuesday, Miskinis said that the internal review stated that Sheskey “was found to have been acting within policy and will not be subjected to discipline” over the closely scrutinized case and that the officer who has been on administrative leave since the incident has returned to active duty on March 31.
“Although this incident has been reviewed at multiple levels, I know that some will not be pleased with the outcome,” the statement read, “however, given the facts, the only lawful and appropriate decision was made.”
Media Release pic.twitter.com/wdq5QaNNyk
— Kenosha Police Dept. (@KenoshaPolice) April 13, 2021
Some will not be pleased is the understatement of the year.
And it wasn’t just the internal review that cleared the officer. Miskinis said that the officer had already been cleared of any wrongdoing in the incident by an outside agency, an independent expert, and the Kenosha County District Attorney. But none of that will matter. There shall be unrest.
Back in January, Kenosha District Attorney Michael Graveley disclosed that neither Sheskey nor any other officers involved would face charges concerning the incident with Blake, the same incident that ignited over a week of protests and riots in the city with lots of violence, looting, and the other usual activities that follow such events.
Citing that the officers had a strong case for self-defense, Graveley at the time said, “If you don’t believe you can prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt, you have an ethical obligation not to issue charges.”
The whole incident started when police were called to the scene because Jacob Blake was violating a protection from abuse order by his ex-girlfriend. She called the police. That’s the whole reason the cops were there in the first place. As they were arresting Blake, he started resisting arrest and fighting with them. He finally broke free from the scuffle and started walking around his vehicle, heading for the driver’s side door. Blake repeatedly disobeyed lawful commands by police for him to stop, and when he opened the door to his vehicle, he was reaching inside the floorboard of his SUV for what he later said was a knife.
If you watch the videos of the incident and remove the emotional element, there is no way you can rationally claim the officers did not follow protocol. This was yet another incident where a young black man was shot by police because of wrongdoing on his part. Blake knew that he violated the protection order and had he only gone along with the police, instead of resisting arrest and taking actions that could have harmed the cops, he would still be able to walk today. The police would not have shot him had he not behaved the way he did. That is a fact.
His ex-girlfriend filed a protection order against Blake after she accused him of sexually assaulting back her in May.
Video of the August 23 incident with police shows the scuffle that happened at the rear passenger side of the vehicle and then shows officers following Blake after he broke free from them and started to walk away from them to get in a vehicle where his children were still inside. Blake admitted he had a knife, and an attorney for Sheskey later explained that the officer believed Blake might harm him or the children in the car.
During an interview in January with Good Morning America’s Michael Strahan, he admitted he had a knife and said that he was intending to “put the knife in the SUV and then lay on the ground to submit to the police officers.” I don’t believe that was what happened, I believe he was going for the knife that was in the SUV. Had he told the officers that’s what he was doing, they might not have shot him.