Wisconsin authorities identify police officer accused of shooting Jacob Blake

KENOSHA, WI (AP) – The Wisconsin officer who shot a Black man, Jacob Blake seven times in the back has been identified as a seven-year veteran of the Kenosha Police Department, the state Department of Justice said Wednesday.

Officer Rusten Sheskey shot Blake, 29, while holding onto his shirt after officers first unsuccessfully used a taser and as Blake leaned into his vehicle during an incident Sunday evening, the agency’s news release said.

State agents later recovered a knife from the driver’s side floorboard of the vehicle, the release said. A search of the vehicle located no additional weapons.

No charges were announced and the state Department of Investigation was continuing to investigate.

The shooting set off three nights of unrest in the city midway between Milwaukee and Chicago. Two people were shot and killed during protests Tuesday night.

Earlier Wednesday, a white, 17-year-old police admirer was arrester after two people were shot to death during the previous night’s protests.

Kyle Rittenhouse, of Antioch, Illinois, was taken into custody in Illinois on suspicion of first-degree intentional homicide.

In the wake of the killings, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers authorized the sending of 500 members of the National Guard to Kenosha, doubling the number of troops.

Authorities also announced a 7 p.m. curfew, an hour earlier than the night before.

And in Orlando, the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks, a team based in Wisconsin, didn’t take the floor for their playoff game against the Magic.

It was later announced that all three NBA playoff games scheduled for Wednesday were postponed, with players around the league choosing to boycott in their strongest statement yet against racial injustice.

Wisconsin Attorney General announced the officer’s identity and outlined detailsof the situation at a press conference Wednesday:

“The basic facts that we can report at this time are these: On the evening of Sunday, August, 2020 Kenosha police department officers were dispatched to a residence in the twenty eight hundred block of Fortieth Street after a female caller reported that her boyfriend was present and was not supposed to be on the premises. During the incident, officers attempted to arrest Jacob S. Blake, aged 29. Law enforcement deployed a Taser to attempt to stop Mr. Blake with the Taser was not successful in stopping him. Mr. Blake walked around his vehicle, opened the driver’s side door and leaned forward. While holding on to Mr. Blake’s shirt. Officer Rusten Sheskey fired his service weapon seven times. Officer Sheskey fired the weapon into Mr. Blake’s back. No other officer fired their weapon. The Kenosha police department does not have body cameras, and therefore the officers were not wearing body cameras. The shooting officer, Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey, has been a law enforcement officer with the Kenosha Police Department for seven years. During the investigation, following the initial incident, Mr. Blake admitted that he had a knife in his possession, and D.C.I. Agents, that’s the division of criminal investigation, recovered a knife from the driver’s side floorboard of Mr. Blake’s vehicle. A search of the vehicle located no additional weapons.”

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