(AP) Two people died and one person was injured as shots were fired late Tuesday in Kenosha during the third night of unrest in Wisconsin following the shooting of a Black man by police, Kenosha police said.
The shooting was reported at about 11:45 p.m. in an area where protests have taken place, Kenosha police Lt. Joseph Nosalik said in a news release.
Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth said one victim had been shot in the head and another in the chest late Tuesday, just before midnight, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Beth didn’t know where the other person was shot, but his or her injuries are not believed to be life threatening.
The shooting was under investigation and no other information was released. The victims have not been identified.
Jacob Blake, who was shot shot multiple times by police in Wisconsin, is paralyzed, and it would “take a miracle” for him to walk again, his family’s attorney said Tuesday, while calling for the officer who opened fire to be arrested and others involved to lose their jobs.
The shooting of Blake on Sunday in Kenosha — apparently in the back while three of his children looked on — was captured on cellphone video and ignited new protests over racial injustice in several cities, coming just three months after the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police touched off a wider reckoning on race.
Earlier Tuesday, Blake’s father spoke alongside other family members and lawyers, telling reporters that police shot his son “seven times, seven times, like he didn’t matter.”
“But my son matters. He’s a human being and he matters,” said Blake’s father, who is also named Jacob Blake.
The 29-year-old was in surgery Tuesday, said attorney Ben Crump, adding that the bullets severed Blake’s spinal cord and shattered his vertebrae. Another attorney said there was also severe damage to organs.
“It’s going to take a miracle for Jacob Blake Jr. to ever walk again,” Crump said.
The legal team plans to file a civil lawsuit against the police department over the shooting. Police have said little about what happened, other than that they were responding to a domestic dispute. The officers involved have not been named. The Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating.
Police fired tear gas for a third night Tuesday to disperse protesters who had gathered outside Kenosha’s courthouse, where some shook a protective fence and threw water bottles and fireworks at officers lined up behind it. Police then used armored vehicles and officers with shields pushed back the crowd when protesters ignored warnings to leave a nearby park.
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers had called for calm Tuesday, while also declaring a state of emergency under which he doubled the National Guard deployment in Kenosha from 125 to 250. The night before crowds destroyed dozens of buildings and set more than 30 fires in the city’s downtown.
“We cannot allow the cycle of systemic racism and injustice to continue,” said Evers, who is facing mounting pressure from Republicans over his handling of the unrest. “We also cannot continue going down this path of damage and destruction.”
Blake’s mother, Julia Jackson, said the damage in Kenosha does not reflect what her family wants and that, if her son could see it, he would be “very unpleased.”
She said the first thing her son said to her when she saw him was he was sorry.
“He said, ‘I don’t want to be a burden on you guys,’” Jackson said. “’I want to be with my children, and I don’t think I’ll walk again.’”
Three of the younger Blake’s sons — aged 3, 5 and 8 — were in the car at the time of the shooting, Crump said. It was the 8 -year-old’s birthday, he added.
The man who said he made the cellphone video of the shooting, 22-year-old Raysean White, said he saw Blake scuffling with three officers and heard them yell, “Drop the knife! Drop the knife!” before the gunfire erupted. He said he didn’t see a knife in Blake’s hands.
In the footage, Blake walks from the sidewalk around the front of his SUV to his driver-side door as officers follow him with their guns drawn and shout at him. As Blake opens the door and leans into the SUV, an officer grabs his shirt from behind and opens fire. Seven shots can be heard, though it isn’t clear how many struck Blake or how many officers fired.
Blake’s father told the Chicago Sun-Times that his son had eight holes in his body.
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