Protests erupted in major U.S. cities on Friday night and Saturday, following the news that 18-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted over the killing of two people last year.
Portland, New York City, Chicago, and Oakland all saw demonstrations explode following the verdict of Mr. Rittenhouse, whom a jury found was acting in self-defense when he shot three men during protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin last year.
The New York City Police Department tweeted two photos showing vandalized cars. One image had a car with its windows smashed in, and the other had spray paint with the words “f**k you” written on the trunk.
“The NYPD takes its responsibility to protect the first amendment rights of peaceful demonstrators seriously,” the department tweeted. “Just as important is the safety of NYers & the protection of property from people breaking the law in the name of protest. As seen tonight in Queens, they will be arrested.”
Portland police declared a riot in the city’s downtown area, after protesters became violent there.
Some demonstrators smashed the windows of local businesses and a police vehicle. The Portland Police Bureau’s downtown precinct was also vandalized.
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In Oakland protesters marched through the streets, shouting “Revolution, nothing else!”
“This verdict… is a green light to any coward, every want-to-be white supremacist vigilante,” one activist told KGO-TV of San Francisco.
The Party for Socialism and Liberation organized a Chicago rally, prompting Mayor Lori Lightfoot to issue a statement on the need to respect the jury’s decision.
“Under our constitutional system, we must respect the jury’s decision,” Ms. Lightfoot said.
Mr. Rittenhouse, of Illinois, shot and killed two people and injured one other amid protests that followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
President Biden said he was “angry and concerned” over the verdict, but said he believed in the integrity of the jury system.
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Mr. Rittenhouse said he believed the jury made the right decision in clearing him of all criminal charges.
“The jury reached the correct verdict,” Mr. Rittenhouse told Fox News. “Self-defense is not illegal. I believe they came to the correct verdict, and I’m glad that everything went well.”