Aug 28, 2020

Kenosha Officials Press Conference Transcript August 28

Kenosha Officials Press Conference Transcript August 28
RevBlogTranscriptsKenosha Officials Press Conference Transcript August 28

Officials in Kenosha, WI held a press conference on August 28 to provide updates on the protest shooting and the National Guard presence in the city. Read the transcript of the briefing here.

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Mayor Antaramian: (00:00)
I also want to talk about the issue of, just quickly, safety for the community. The police and sheriffs and the National Guard and all the other entities that are here from all over the state and the feds that are helping us, we appreciate and give them a great deal of credit for helping us get to where we are today, where the violence has dropped dramatically. And helping us keep people from outside the area from coming in and causing trouble. The last number of nights, you’ve seen very peaceful protests, and that’s what it’s about. That’s how you make change. And so we encourage the peaceful protesting that has occurred. And lastly, rebuilding. Rebuilding is more than just rebuilding buildings and rebuilding businesses.

Mayor Antaramian: (00:49)
Though, we have made a request to the state, the governor, and I will be calling the legislature asking them for a financial aid to help these businesses and the community to regrow and rebuild the businesses that have been damaged. I also will be talking with the congressman and the US senator making the same request on a federal level. Those things we are going to do. But even with that, it still goes back to one simple thing. Remarkable how much you become your father over time. My father used to always say, people talk. That’s not the issue. It’s how you listen. So thank you very much.

Jim Kreuser: (01:36)
Good afternoon. I’m Jim Kreuser, Kenosha County Executive. And on behalf of the Kenosha County Board chairman, John O’Day, we are grateful to be here on a second straight night of relative calm in Kenosha County. And we’re grateful and thankful that the protesting last night was done peacefully. To everyone who’s been abiding by the nightly curfew, thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I support everybody’s right to protest peacefully. But I think we found that people going home after dark has played a significant role tamping down the violence and the destruction in the last couple of nights. Have also stated in the last couple of days that we’re committed to working with the city on a new path forward to bring our community back together and to seek a change that is needed but peacefully. I pray that we are now headed in that direction. Thank you.

Sheriff: (02:40)
For the first time in a few days I got to see my family last night. And my daughter reminded me of one thing that I forgot to mention and that’s talking about the two people that were shot. Actually, three people that were shot on Tuesday night. And I guess I’d like to point out how very sorry I am that two people lost their lives. One is seriously injured. And we also had one young gentlemen on Sunday night who was shot too. For all the loss of life, for all the injuries, I feel really bad that this happened here in Kenosha. And I didn’t bring notes today because the last couple days have been similar to what we’ve already talked about. So for me to recap, everyone who’s here and thank everyone, I do thank everyone. But things are improving. And the local people here are rebuilding.

Sheriff: (03:51)
Someone asked me this morning, what do you want the nation and the world to think Kenosha is? It’s a great place to live. It’s a great place to raise a family. We have great schools. We have great parks and lakes. Great places to raise a family. And when all of this calms down, like I hope it’s trending toward right now. If you really go outside this small area right here, life goes on as normal in Kenosha County, in the city of Kenosha. The part that’s damaged and hurt, we’re all going to work together to rebuild. And we’re looking forward to the rebuilding part. We’re doing that right now. And for those on the outside of Kenosha, it’s a great place to be. And I’m very proud to be part of it.

Chief Miskinis: (04:49)
Good afternoon. Last night, as it’s already been alluded, was much calmer, much safer here in the city of Kenosha and the surrounding area. Hopefully that means that we’re moving to a safer place all together and we return to normalcy. We need a place where we have peace, where we heal and we can work toward growth. With that though, the emphasis has been on law enforcement and it’s our burden to do that. We can’t do that alone. We need citizens. We need everybody’s assistance in that. And in order to accomplish that, we need the media and elected officials to be part of the solution, not part of a problem. Comments that are made that are divisive, do not make us closer to the goal we want, where we have inclusion and safety and unbiased for all. So over the last number of days, we’ve had some major events.

Chief Miskinis: (05:49)
We’ve had two people lose their lives senselessly while peacefully protesting. I’m not sure of the details behind what led to the altercation, but two people were killed, one person seriously injured senselessly. Earlier, I made comments about the role of curfew in that. My comments were misconstrued. The Kenosha Police Department and the Sheriff’s department function under a curfew as a tool to keep people safe. And we’re requesting all people to obey that curfew to stay home. In no way was my comment earlier intended to suggest that by being out after curfew, that those persons played a role in their deaths. Tragically, lives were lost, and a person were injured. That rests solely on the person who did that, not on the victims of this crime, any more than the victims of the countless arsons and other things that are going on. This is in the hands of those who created. We ask for everybody’s help in stopping the violence, assisting the investigations so we can hold those accountable in a court of law.

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (07:04)
Good afternoon. I Major General Paul Knapp. I’m Wisconsin’s adjutant general and commander of the Wisconsin National Guard. I’m happy to be here today to update you on the efforts of the Wisconsin National Guard in supporting civil authorities here in Kenosha. Our first guard members arrived on Monday and we’ve steadily increased our numbers, supporting the city each day in response to requests from local authorities here. I’d like to, again, emphasize that we are citizen soldiers and airmen. That means that we live and work in these communities, that we’re your neighbors all across Wisconsin and we come when we are called. We’re invested in these communities and we want the best for Kenosha and Wisconsin. And we’ll continue to be here to support for as long as we’re needed. Additionally, we’re bringing in National Guard soldiers from other states, specifically, Michigan, Alabama, and Arizona supporting this effort as well, which will increase our number of troops supporting the people here in Kenosha.

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (08:05)
I’d like to say that we’re grateful for their partnership and the partnership with all of the agencies and not just law enforcement that I’ve come together here in Kenosha. In terms of bringing in soldiers from other states, I was asked yesterday why that was, and I want to make sure that I answer that clearly. So in Wisconsin, we have one military police company that is assigned here in Wisconsin. I made the assessment that due to the situation here, that we would be best served by having additional military police companies, which have additional training in civil disturbance and how to deal with that. So there were other states that have this capability that offered their assistance and Governor Evers gladly accepted that support. I’ll also say that we’re grateful to see-

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (09:03)
I’ll also say that we’re grateful to see the calm that has ensued over the last few nights. It has been much better, much more peaceful, and that is a great sign here. And remind everyone that all of the resources that are here in Kenosha are designed to support everyone’s First Amendment rights to peacefully and lawfully demonstrate. All the National Guard soldiers and airmen took an oath to uphold and protect the constitution. It’s why we wear the uniform. We also wear this uniform because we want to serve our fellow citizens. We love this state and nation, and we want to protect the freedoms that we enjoy.

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (09:45)
So in closing, if you’re a community leader, an influencer, or anyone who wants to have your voice heard, please know that these vast resources of our country are here at your disposal to peacefully and lawfully exercise your First Amendment rights. Don’t let looting, rioting, or any other unlawful behavior drown out your voice. Thank you.

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:09)
And now, since I’m the last speaker, I’m going to open up for questions first. If anyone has any questions for me, since I’m up here at the podium.

Speaker 2: (10:16)
How many troops do you have in town?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:19)
So, as I mentioned before, we don’t discuss specific numbers, but I will tell you that we have over a thousand today.

Speaker 3: (10:27)
How long will they be here?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:28)
As I mentioned in my statement, we’ll be here as long as we’re needed.

Speaker 4: (10:30)
Is it a day to day basis sort of thing?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:33)
Absolutely. It is. We reevaluate, we’re in meetings, regularly scheduled and impromptu meetings, with both of the governor and the local authorities determining the needs of the local community, for sure.

Speaker 5: (10:45)
Can you just emphasize one more time, who makes the final call for whether you all are deployed?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:52)
That would be the governor.

Speaker 5: (10:54)
And what are the essential duties of the Guardsmen here in town?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (10:58)
We’re doing an array of different things. I’d like to emphasize that we are in support of local authorities. So we don’t self deploy. We don’t decide on our own where we go or what we do while we’re out there supporting the local community. So we work in conjunction with the local authorities and every day we’re, on a day to day basis, planning where they would best be utilized. We’re doing things like point security, securing facilities, we are in a reactionary role. One of the things that we’re prepared to do is to assist firefighters if they were to get into a situation where they needed to fight a fire and the scene wasn’t safe for any number of reasons. That’s one of the things that we would also do.

Speaker 6: (11:42)
Just a general question now. Are you concerned about the weekend? I know there are some demonstrations planned.

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (11:49)
I’ll take the first crack at that. I don’t know that I would say I’m concerned, but we’re definitely keeping track on the weekend. The weekend is a different dynamic, so in conjunction with the local authorities, we’re making sure that we’re prepared that anything might come up over the weekend.

Speaker 7: (12:06)
Before you leave, does the President or anybody in his administration have any role or has played any role in your being here or do you consult with them when you do anything here?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (12:17)
As has been mentioned in the press already, Governor Evers has been in contact with the White House. I’m not privy to the specifics of those discussions, but there have been discussions.

Speaker 8: (12:29)
And just for clarification, those 1,000 Guardsmen that are here, does that include the out of state ones?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (12:34)
Again, I just gave you over a thousand, and that as of right now does not include those.

Speaker 8: (12:43)
Or I guess my question is, are the out of state members here or are they still on their way?

Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp: (12:47)
Okay. Yes. Good question. So they’re en route right now. We have some that are driving here, the ones from Michigan, and then the others will be arriving via airplane later today.

Speaker 9: (13:02)
Can someone tell us how many people have been arrested in relation to the protests and on what charges?

Speaker 10: (13:10)
I’ll let Chief Miskinis come up and address just the crowd.

Chief Miskinis: (13:16)
To date, there have been somewhere around 50 people arrested, just under 50, for a variety of offenses from curfew, to weapons charges, drug charges, illegal fireworks. And I believe a suspect last night was arrested for possessing or flame thrower. Actually, that was the night before.

Speaker 11: (13:38)
Question about Jacob Blake. If he’s still apparently being shackled to the hospital bed, can someone clarify those reports?

Chief Miskinis: (13:46)
I can tell you that he is and has been under the guard of an outside agency. I can’t speak to that. And nobody here can.

Speaker 11: (13:53)
Has anyone spoken to that agency?

Speaker 12: (13:54)
What would be the agency?

Chief Miskinis: (13:59)
I can’t speak to that, it’s an outside law enforcement agency.

Speaker 12: (14:01)
Is it standard practice policy to have someone like that?

Chief Miskinis: (14:05)
It is.

Speaker 13: (14:05)
And if so, why?

Chief Miskinis: (14:07)
In a [deference 00:14:07] to have an outside investigation in place. It’s also very helpful obviously to have an outside agency guard that that person for his protection and for liability reasons with the department.

Speaker 13: (14:18)
Does it have anything to do with the outstanding warrant? That’s my understanding, that was in place against him from July?

Chief Miskinis: (14:26)
He’s being guarded because he’s under arrest. And it was for an outstanding warrant for third degree sexual assault.

Speaker 13: (14:34)
And a follow up question, if I may. Can you tell us if the officers who responded to that call on Sunday knew of the outstanding warrant?

Chief Miskinis: (14:43)
I believe that’s why they were there, but I don’t know specifically.

Speaker 12: (14:51)
Would that have changed the nature of the response?

Chief Miskinis: (14:51)
It would certainly be heightened awareness, but in this case, the altercation, and remember that I’m not aware of the details of this, is that there was some resisting in the basis of that contact and the arrest. So that’s what changed the dynamics of it.

Speaker 14: (15:03)
Chief, have the officers been interviewed yet by investigators?

Chief Miskinis: (15:08)
I believe DCI has spoken with them, yes.

Speaker 14: (15:11)
Have they got and idea of why he responded as he did on that call?

Chief Miskinis: (15:14)
They do not share any details with me from the investigation until it’s done.

Reporter 8: (15:18)
I;m not sure if this question would be for you or for Sheriff [inaudible 00:06:21], but a number of people on the jail roster this morning were still in custody, I think it was two days after an arrest for being out after curfew, which I understand is a violation. Can you explain why? I seems rather long for a violation, people are asking.

Speaker 10: (15:36)
Do you want to stick with the Chief first? Does anybody else have any more questions for Chief Miskinis? Right here, yes sir.

Speaker 15: (15:43)
So this is in regards to what happened Tuesday night, with the shooting. The suspect was seen on video walking away from the scene, presumably based on the position with a body or someone on the ground behind him, with an assault rifle, and he was able to leave the scene. It wasn’t questioned. So just from a procedural standpoint, can you give us an idea on why that didn’t happen? Why he was able to leave the scene, when presumably, or when people were heard on video as well saying, “This man shot someone.”

Chief Miskinis: (16:13)
Sure. That’s a good question. So to understand what happened that night and what you saw in the film, or the video clip there, and you need to understand what was happening in the greater scheme of things. There were a lot of people in the area, a lot of people with weapons and unfortunately, a lot of gunfire. So what the officers were walking into or driving into with this case, was a shots fired complaint, not a shooting, not a person down complaint. We have had many of those over the course of this unfortunate event. So they’re responding to that. They see somebody walking towards them with his hands up. That too isn’t out of the ordinary, given all the events that have been going on. Many people, as I drove around and others have explained, have seen the same thing. We have armed individuals out protesting or counter protesting, or simply walking around exercising their right, will put their hands up. So it might’ve been abnormal two weeks ago. It’s no longer abnormal. So there was nothing to suggest that this person was involved in any criminal behavior.

Chief Miskinis: (17:14)
He continued, he made contact near the officer’s door. And you can hear on the recording I heard that the officers are telling him to get out of the road. Clearly, they’re not seeing him as a suspect or a threat of any kind. He’s allowed to leave, where he goes to Antioch and turns himself in because we have no idea that he’s involved. The officers become focused on what they see down the road.

Speaker 15: (17:36)
Was that a lapse in judgment?

Chief Miskinis: (17:38)
What’s that?

Speaker 15: (17:39)
Was that a lapse in judgment to not stop him?

Chief Miskinis: (17:41)
I would say not, given the circumstances and again, as I said, two weeks ago, my answer might’ve been different. But right now, the totality of circumstances, nothing suggested this person or anybody else who was armed around them was the person. They’re very unlikely to have heard any comments from the crowd next to the vehicles that were there, the radio traffic, the gunfire, the crowd-

Chief Miskinis: (18:03)
With the vehicles that were there, the radio traffic, the gunfire, the crowd.

Reporter 1: (18:06)
A church group had its U-Haul pulled over, $1000 worth of relief supplies, including first aid kits, snacks, water, and fire extinguishers were seized, but they have not been returned. What can you tell us about that?

Chief Miskinis: (18:19)
I’m not aware of that incident.

Reporter 2: (18:22)
Officer, the initial shooting. Was the police officer aware that there were three babies in the car when they fired on the suspect?

Chief Miskinis: (18:30)
Are you referring back to the beginning of this?

Reporter 2: (18:34)
Yes. I’m talking about the gentleman who was shot seven times. There were three babies in the car. Did they understand there were three children in that car?

Chief Miskinis: (18:40)
I can tell you once again that I don’t have the details of that event. No matter how many times you ask the question, the details are in the hands of the DCI and not me.

Reporter 3: (18:49)
Office Ryder, I’m a floor writer.

Reporter 4: (18:51)
Can you tell me some information, or-

PR Officer: (18:51)
Go ahead, sir.

Reporter 3: (18:52)
No, generally speaking, clearly the kid was under the age of 17 years old. What is the rule? I mean, couldn’t we have had an officer caught that from the get go? I mean, this may not have happened. What is the general rule of thumb about checking IDs? I mean, do officers do that in that regard?

Chief Miskinis: (19:15)
So again, back to two weeks ago, it was very likely that that would have been done given the vast number of people out, some people wearing masks, some not. The appearance of people, we don’t have… I can’t really answer that in current context because now there’s so many. He wasn’t clearly an underage person. I think if you’re small, a small child, we could do that. It’s very difficult to try to ascertain that there is an age issue when it’s that close.

Reporter 1: (19:41)
Militia members have told me that without exception, law enforcement officers were friendly to them as they walked around with semiautomatic weapons on the streets that night. Did that have anything to do with the fact that the now accused shooter was able to walk right past deputies and now there’s an extradition fight out of Illinois?

Chief Miskinis: (20:06)
I can’t speak to that. I believe everybody out there in law enforcement has been friendly to both sides. And I can tell you that as there is no reason to disbelieve what I just said about not knowing this person was a suspect, that that had any role in it.

PR Officer: (20:20)
Next question right here in the back of the room.

Reporter 5: (20:22)
Can you tell us how Rittenhouse got the gun and are any more people going to be charged actively in this case?

Chief Miskinis: (20:27)
I don’t have any details as to how he obtained the gun. I know we’re following up on a number of things, and if there are other violations, we’ll certainly have to-

PR Officer: (20:34)
Two more questions for Chief Miskinis right over here. Right over here.

Reporter 6: (20:38)
Chief, has Kyle Rittenhouse been questioned yet? And I know you said that you didn’t know what led up to the shooting, but it’s been a number of days and there’s a lot of videos. So how has that been possible?

Chief Miskinis: (20:51)
Well, as in most homicide cases, they take days. It also takes the cooperation of the person involved as they invoke their right to an attorney. We may not get that information. I can’t speak to what the details were about his motive because I do not know.

PR Officer: (21:09)
Final question for Chief Miskinis right here. Yes sir, go ahead.

Reporter 7: (21:12)
Oh, thank you. Chief, what is the department policy in regards to use of force in situations where the person that is accused or suspected of a crime is fleeing from officers, and what is the state law under which you operate?

Chief Miskinis: (21:26)
Well, we follow the Department of Justice. There’s a training in standards, confrontational force, continuing… It has a host of number of things, but there’s a hierarchy. And the level of force that can be used is that level that is sufficient to take a person into custody and take that effect. So depending upon what action of the person who was being arrested takes, that drives the level of force used by the officers.

Reporter 7: (21:49)
Are they required to use deadly force in the event someone is fleeing?

Chief Miskinis: (21:52)
Are they required? No. And I don’t believe that there was a deadly force used for fleeing.

PR Officer: (21:57)
That’s the final question today Chief Miskinis. Does anybody have questions for Sheriff Beth?

Reporter 8: (22:01)
The one from earlier about arrests. I’ll reiterate the question. There was a number of arrests earlier in the week and some people have been held, according to [inaudible 00:22:11], for two plus days after being arrested for violating curfew. We have some questions about that being rather long for a violation. Do you now why you would hold that long?

Sheriff: (22:23)
I don’t know. I truthfully don’t know who’s in there. I know there are few curfew ones, but they have to post bond and they also have to provide proper identification. We have to be able to know who they are. So if they’ve not done either of those two, then they might have to appear in court, and right now the court’s a little bit delayed. So that might answer your question, but I don’t know of a specific circumstance.

Reporter 8: (22:45)
And as a follow up, can you explain why on bail do you give [inaudible 00:22:48] scene in Kenosha? We wondered what that was for.

Sheriff: (22:51)
Probably just for the safety of everybody coming to it. We’re sending them to a scene. Truthfully, that’s the first I heard of it because I’ve been dealing with so many other things that wasn’t the priority for me to do that.

PR Officer: (23:01)
Over here today, anybody have any questions for Sheriff. Right back here?

Reporter 9: (23:04)
Do you have any information about whether Kyle Rittenhouse’s mother drove him to Wisconsin, and will she pay the consequences?

Sheriff: (23:11)
I actually was asked that question this morning. It’s the first I heard of it. I don’t know. I didn’t know that she did. Again, we’re not investigating that part. We all, and I know we’ve kind of said this, but we all have different roles in this entire situation. That investigation is not under my… In my world.

PR Officer: (23:30)
Right in the back, blue shirt, blue hat. Okay, all right. Yes, sir. You have a question?

Reporter 11: (23:35)
Sheriff, have you seen the video that has been circling around of officers or law enforcement that were offering bottles of water and saying we appreciate you [inaudible 00:23:45]?

Sheriff: (23:45)
That one, I was asked about a few different ones today and, truthfully, I’ve watched no social media. I’ve watched no news broadcast. I’ve not read any papers since last week. So, but that one I did see. And it’s an armored car that says Sheriff on it. It wasn’t one of our BearCats. Right now, we have 19 armored vehicles here that are all being utilized. It wasn’t one of ours. But as the Chief pointed out, and one of the… I don’t know, I’m not a techie person. I don’t do Facebook. But one of the people that was videotaping said it sounds like they were out in Portland, too. And they commented on how friendly the law enforcement was here in Wisconsin. I don’t know if I’d take that as a compliment or not.

Sheriff: (24:29)
But the fact that one of our people who are here threw a bottle of water to someone walking down the street, I understand that part. His comment that he made, it doesn’t mirror all of law enforcement’s perspective on what happened. This group of people that are carrying weapons here, if they’re in their house… And again, I support the Second Amendment. If they’re in there protecting their property, I have no issue with that. And the people that have been here carrying guns, they haven’t been arrested because it’s a right that they have.

Sheriff: (25:10)
Have we asked for them to come? Are we asking for them to come in and support things? I’m not. One of the things is you could clearly see the situation escalated Tuesday night because a 17- year-old boy carrying what appears to be an assault rifle, who has no idea how to handle a situation like this, I don’t care if he had the right intentions or not, two people are currently dead. And one almost had his arm blown off.

Sheriff: (25:45)
So the comments that whoever was in that armored vehicle said, it does not reflect what we here in Kenosha are asking for. We have, as you heard the General say, we’ve got a lot of military personnel. We have a lot of law enforcement personnel from throughout the state, throughout the Midwest. And truthfully, we have them from throughout the country here right now to help protect Kenosha.

Reporter 11: (26:11)
Were you anticipating the group-

PR Officer: (26:11)
Here in the center of the room.

Reporter 12: (26:11)
Can you tell us the status of the nine people who were arrested this week about the situation at the gas station? It sounds like-

Sheriff: (26:23)
That wasn’t us.

Reporter 12: (26:23)
Was that Kenosha police?

PR Officer: (26:23)
It was.

Reporter 12: (26:24)
Can you talk about that, Chief?

PR Officer: (26:25)

Sheriff: (26:26)
Why don’t you guys stick with one person at a time? And that way we can wrap it up. And I don’t mean to cut you off. I think the chief probably could answer that.

PR Officer: (26:35)
Right here.

Reporter 12: (26:36)
Of the 50 people who were arrested for protest related charges, can you tell in general where they’re from? Are they from in town, out of town?

Sheriff: (26:47)
I’ve heard of a lot of out of town people. I’m not saying that there aren’t some from in town, but I’m aware there are a lot from out of town.

Reporter 13: (26:54)
Sheriff, were you anticipating that some of those armed individuals, armed groups, would be out in the streets Tuesday night to confront protestors? Was law enforcement-

Press: (27:03)
… Tuesday night to confront protestors. Was law enforcement anticipating that?

Sheriff: (27:12)
Our department and the people that were out there probably knew that. Again, my day from the minute I get up until the minute I fall asleep somewhere, there are certain things that I’m privy to and enlightened on. I’m sure our staff knew that. I’m sure the law enforcement out there knew that because they could see them. I’m sure that whoever was out in the field relayed that back to the command post.

Press: (27:38)
But beforehand, because sometimes there’s online chatter.

Sheriff: (27:38)
I’m sure that they did.

Press: (27:38)
There are calls for people to show up.

Sheriff: (27:40)
I’m sure that they did. Again, the fact that they were out there isn’t against the law. The one picture that I saw of the suspect, he had a mask on. Again, I don’t know what he was doing the rest of the time. I don’t know if other people saw him later. But the one I saw, he had a mask on, he had a baseball cap on. He had some kind of yellow or green shirt. He looked young to me, but I couldn’t have told you he was under age. I don’t know if I answered your question.

Officer: (28:17)
Final question for Sheriff Beth?

Press: (28:18)
Sheriff, can you confirm-

Press: (28:18)
Sheriff, I know your agency is not investigating the officer involved shooting, [crosstalk 00:28:23].

Sheriff: (28:23)
Then don’t ask the question.

Press: (28:25)
I know that you deputies were not involved. But just as the top law enforcement official in this county, when you see that cell phone video …

Sheriff: (28:34)
I didn’t see the cell phone video.

Press: (28:35)
The cell phone video of the shooting of Jacob Blake. As the top law enforcement official in this county, do you see a problem, just from that video, of what that officer did?

Sheriff: (28:46)
I think I answered. I did not see the video.

Press: (28:49)
You have never seen that cell phone video?

Sheriff: (28:52)
I’m sticking to the same thing I answered earlier. Yes, I have not seen-

Press: (28:55)
Do you see a problem with that, that you haven’t seen the video?

Sheriff: (28:59)
Okay. Thank you.

Officer: (29:00)
All right, [crosstalk 00:29:00] question for Sheriff Beth? I’ll bring Chief Miskinis back up to answer your question in the middle, and then we’ll move on.

Press: (29:05)
I have one followup for the Chief as well [crosstalk 00:29:07].

Officer: (29:07)
No more followups. Right here in the middle.

Press: (29:11)
Chief, can you tell us just the statuses of the nine people who were arrested in relation to the situation at the Speedway gas station? It sounds like they were out-of-state plates. Have you discovered any more [crosstalk 00:29:19].

Chief Miskinis: (29:21)
I can address that in general. I don’t have great details on it. But the Kenosha Police Department received a tip that there was a number of vehicles, three, that were on the southwest side of town with out-of-state plates in a remote area, and it was deemed suspicious. We initiated surveillance with them and eventually made contact with the gas station across town where I believe they were fueling up a gas can. Don’t quote me on that because I’m not necessarily sure, but I think that’s what I recall hearing.

Chief Miskinis: (29:50)
In the course of identifying the occupants of two of the vehicles, the third vehicle attempted to leave, disobeyed orders, wouldn’t roll the windows down, would not cooperate with the investigation. Due to the actions of the driver, entry was made into the car. That being done, they’re investigating what’s going on. They found shields, masks, illegal fireworks, some, believe, controlled substances. We called for the assistance of ATF who was in town. They provided a supporting role with that. Then the investigation remains ours. So they were arrested on the charges, pretty much what I just laid out for you.

Press: (30:32)
What kinds of illegal fireworks? Just too big or …

Chief Miskinis: (30:36)
Well, again, not with the details, but it may be the size, the amount of explosives involved in it. I don’t have the details on that.

Press: (30:44)
Where were they from?

Chief Miskinis: (30:46)
Those from out of state? I don’t recall which state it was from.

Press: (30:50)
On Monday, 200 cars came down the interstate and were allowed to come through into this area. [crosstalk 00:03:56].

Chief Miskinis: (30:56)
I believe I was told there was one more question.

Officer: (30:58)
That’s the last question for the Chief. Thank you very much. Does anybody have questions for Mayor Antaramian? Anybody have questions for County Executive Kreuser?

Press: (31:05)
I have a question for the Mayor.

Press: (31:06)
Yes, Mayor?

Officer: (31:07)
For the Mayor? Yes, go ahead.

Press: (31:08)
Some organizations have called on you to ask the Chief and the Sheriff to resign amid all of this unrest, and then the officer involved shooting. Do you plan to ask them to do that?

Mayor Antaramian: (31:20)
No. I think that when you look at what has occurred over the last week and all the activities that are going on, everyone is doing the best they can with the situation they have. I think both the Chief and the Sheriff clarified the situation as to why people were making that request.

Press: (31:39)
Mayor, if there are armed groups out this weekend, how do you want law enforcement to address that.

Mayor Antaramian: (31:47)
I have made it really clear of my opinion of armed militia out in the city. Do not want you here, do not expect you to be here, and you should stay away. I think that’s as clear as I can make it again.

Press: (32:04)
How do you want law enforcement [crosstalk 00:32:04].

Mayor Antaramian: (32:05)
Again, I think I just made it as clear as I am able to make it, and law enforcement will do their jobs.

Press: (32:10)
Mayor, this church group that had $1,000 worth of essentially humanitarian supplies seized, will there be any attempt to return that property to those groups who have not been charged with crimes?

Mayor Antaramian: (32:23)
I will look into it. I do not know anything about it though, to be honest with you.

Officer: (32:28)
Any other questions for Mayor Antaramian?

Mayor Antaramian: (32:31)
Thank you.

Officer: (32:32)
Thank you, Mayor. Any questions for County Executive Kreuser?

Press: (32:34)
Are they any expected changes to the curfew, or are you sticking with 7:00 through Sunday?

Mayor Antaramian: (32:38)
Sticking through 7:00 through Sunday.

Officer: (32:41)
All right, if no questions for County Executive Kreuser, any final questions for General [Nap 00:05:45]? Ladies and gentlemen, that concludes our press conference. Thank you very much for your time. We will see you Monday right back here at 1:00 PM. Thank you, again.

Press: (32:53)
Thank you. Same place?

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