This article was written by Jackie Salo of The New York Post on November 18, 2021.
Several schools in Kenosha, Wisconsin, have shifted to virtual learning in anticipation of possible unrest over a verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial Thursday, as jurors were set to return to court for the third day of deliberations.
Five schools near the Kenosha County Courthouse announced Wednesday that they would go virtual for the remainder of the week as a safety precaution, news station WISN reported.
“While we have not been advised of any existing imminent danger, we feel this is the best course of action to protect our students and staff during an uncertain time,” the Kenosha Unified School District said in a message sent to parents.
“We will continue to work closely with law enforcement to receive support as needed in the days and weeks ahead.”
Among the impacted schools were Brass Elementary, Reuther Central High School and Washington Middle School.
The move comes after tensions escalated outside the courthouse Wednesday, as protesters engaged in heated altercations.
A Black Lives Matter protester was arrested after he attempted to grab a Rittenhouse supporter’s sign, then body-slammed and punched a journalist who tried to intervene.
The jury consisting of seven women and five men is set to reconvene at 9 a.m. local time for the third day of deliberations.
Jurors have spent roughly 14 hours weighing whether Rittenhouse provoked the violence or was acting in self-defense when he opened fire on three men, killing two during last year’s riots in the city.
For the last hour of Wednesday, the jury rewatched video evidence, including drone footage that prosecutors claim shows Rittenhouse pointing his gun at protesters before the shootings.
The drone footage, however, is at the center of the defense’s request for a mistrial.
His attorneys have argued that they received a poorer-quality version of the footage, which impacted how they approached the case.
The judge has not yet ruled on the matter.
Rittenhouse, 18, faces five charges, including intentional homicide, which carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.