Kenosha County Judge Bruce Schroeder criticized the media harshly for their poor coverage and commentary on the murder trial of Kyle Rittenhouse on Wednesday, saying that the experience would make him more wary of televising his trials.
As the jury deliberated, and as the defense and prosecutors argued over video evidence, Schroeder added, with irritation, that the media had spread “misinformation” about the trial. He singled out the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, which published the views of legal experts who said it was odd that he had not ruled on the defense’s motion to dismiss the charges.
Schroeder noted that he had not yet even read the motion, which had been submitted the day before, and had not yet heard the prosecution’s side of the story.
He also addressed the controversy over his decision not to allow the men shot by Rittenhouse, in what the defendant claims was self-defense, to be referred to as “victims”:
How would you like to be put on trial for a crime, and the judge introduced the case to the jury by introducing you as the efendant and the person who is accusing you as the vicitm, and then throughout the trial have all the references to the complaining witness as being the victim? Is it so difficult to just use the term, “complaining witness,” instead of prejudging what the jury is here to determine, as to whether there is a victim, and whether there was a crime committed?
Finally, he defended his decision to allow the defendant to draw the numbers of alternate jurors himself by referring to a case in which a clerk had — randomly — chosen to remove the only black juror in a trial were the defendant was also black.
That case, he said, made him switch to a policy of always allowing the defendant to choose the numbers from the tumbler.
He also defended the attorneys, saying it was “shameful” to see what media commentators were saying about them.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.