NPR Reporter Presents Her Own Facts in Recent Rittenhouse Trial Article

Witness McGinnis showing how Rosenbaum lunged for Rifle held by Kyle Rittenhouse

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- Becky Sullivan of NPR makes a startling claim of fact, which is not in evidence from the trial or the criminal complaint.

It is especially relevant because it is a claim about a crucial moment in the sequence of events where the apparent first aggressor, Joseph Rosenbaum, attacked Kyle Rittenhouse. Mr. Rosenbaum attempted to grab the barrel of the rifle Rittenhouse had pointed toward the ground between him and Rosenbaum.  The relevant testimony is at 2:34:40 in the video of the trial.

The rifle is pointed at the ground between Rittenhouse and Rosenbaum.  Rosenbaum is first running, then lunging at Rittenhouse, attempting to grab the barrel of the rifle which is between them. As Rosenbaum is lunging, Rittenhouse moves the barrel of the rifle to prevent Rosenbaum from controlling the rifle, and fires toward Rosenbaum, who is in front of him. McGinnis is following Rosenbaum, and is behind him.  All of this is happening in a fraction of a second. Rittenhouse has not moved his feet. Rosenbaum continues his movement toward Rittenhouse, falling on his face in front of Rittenhouse.

McGinnis is not sure if it was the shots that caused Rosenbaum to fall, or if Rosenbaum’s action of lunging to attempt to grab the rifle would have caused Rosenbaum to fall anyway. There is no testimony that Rosenbaum was on a trajectory to move past Rittenhouse. At 2:40 in the video, witness McGinnis gives this testimony:

It is unclear to me, because the shots were so quick, whether, you know, the shots are the reason why he, because he lunged, and the shots were fired as he was lunging, so it was, like, perhaps it was the shots that caused him to, rather than stopping himself, just fall flat.

Becky Sullivan inserts the allegation of Rosenbaum moving past Rittenhouse into her article. From kgoy.org:

Rosenbaum lunged for the rifle, McGinnis said, and Rittenhouse dodged. As Rosenbaum’s momentum was carrying him past Rittenhouse, Rittenhouse fired four times. Afterward, Rittenhouse ran away, leaving Rosenbaum laying face down on the ground, McGinnis said.

When prosecutor Thomas Binger suggested it was impossible for McGinnis to know what Rosenbaum was trying to do as he lunged, McGinnis replied, “Well, he said ‘f*** you’ and he reached for the weapon.” 

More testimony is given by Mr. McGinnis is at 4:56 in the questioning by DA Binger, confirming that Rosenbaum was lunging at Rittenhouse when he was shot.

There is no evidence or indication in the testimony that Rosenbaum’s momentum was carrying him past Kyle Rittenhouse when Rosenbaum was shot. The testimony is that Rosenbaum’s momentum was carrying him toward Kyle Rittenhouse, because Rosenbaum was lunging at Rittenhouse, and Rittenhouse did not move his feet.

Rittenhouse moved the barrel of the rifle to keep Rosenbaum from grabbing it. At the point the shots were fired, Rosenbaum had, a fraction of a second earlier, been within inches, perhaps touched, the barrel of the rifle, while he lunged at the rifle, which was directly between him and Kyle Rittenhouse.

Below is the allegation of fact which was inserted in the narrative, without any foundation in the testimony, by Becky Sullivan:

“As Rosenbaum’s momentum was carrying him past Rittenhouse, Rittenhouse fired four times.”

If MS Sullivan can back up her statement with evidence, it would be a significant change in the narrative of what happened.

The autopsy of Joseph Rosenbaum has not yet been released to the public, to this correspondent’s knowledge. A brief description of the wounds has been released  From cbslocal.com:

Dr. P. Douglas Kelley of the Milwaukee Medical Examiner’s office determined that Rosenbaum suffered one gunshot to the groin that fractured his pelvis, another to the back which perforated his right lung and liver, another to the left hand, a superficial gunshot wound to his lateral left thigh, and a graze wound to the right side his forehead.

Those wounds are consistent with shots being fired at Rosenbaum as he lunged toward Rittenhouse. They are more difficult to explain if Rosenbaum was moving past Rittenhouse when Rittenhouse fired. The full autopsy should show the trajectory of the shots fired. It will likely be introduced as evidence in the trial.

The autopsy is not yet in evidence. What we know of the trajectory of Rosenbaum comes from the video evidence and Mr. McGinnis testimony.

Neither the video nor the eye-witness testimony indicates Rosenbaum was moving past Rittenhouse when the shots were fired.

The criminal complaint is consistent with Rosenbaum being in front of Rittenhouse when he was shot. From the criminal complaint WPR:

McGinnis felt something on his leg and his first thought was wondering whether he had gotten shot. McGinnis was behind and slightly to the right of Rosenbaum, in the line of fire, when the defendant shot.

If Rosenbaum was moving “past” Rittenhouse when Rosenbaum was shot, being behind Rosenbaum would have put McGinnis out of the line of fire.

This is how false narratives are started. Watch for other reporters to now claim that Rosenbaum was moving past Rittenhouse when the shots were fired. While this would not remove the danger to Rittenhouse, the narrative may be used to claim that Rosenbaum was not a danger to Rittenhouse when he was shot.


About Dean Weingarten:Dean Weingarten

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

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