Police Officers and Public Officials Donated to Kenosha, Wisconsin, Shooter Kyle Rittenhouse's Crowdfunding Page

Police Officers and Public Officials Donated to Kenosha, Wisconsin, Shooter Kyle Rittenhouse’s Crowdfunding Page

Kyle Rittenhouse Kenosha Shooter
Kyle Rittenhouse (Image: Twitter/@KanielaIng)

Last summer, people were protesting the police shooting of an unarmed Black man shot in broad daylight in front of his children in Kenosha, Wisconsin. During the protests, a young white teenager from another state carried firearms into the state and killed two people while injuring a third as he walked down a Wisconsin street. According to a report from The Guardian, based on a data breach from a Christian crowdfunding website that raised approximately $600,000, police officers and public officials donated to the fund that allowed the shooter to get out on bail.

The 17-year-old gunman, Kyle Rittenhouse, has been charged with killing two men with an AR-15 rifle in Wisconsin during the protests over the police shooting of an unarmed Black man in front of his children, Jacob Blake. Rittenhouse faces six criminal counts in Wisconsin, including first-degree intentional homicide.

Last summer, a GiveSendGo page for Rittenhouse raised $585,940, to use for his defense in the shooting deaths of two people and injuring a third. Among some of the donors were people who may not have listed their names on the website, several used email addresses that led back to police officers and other public officials.

One of those donations was for $25 and is associated with the official email address for Sgt. William Kelly, who is currently the executive officer of internal affairs in the Norfolk police department in Virginia. Along with his donation, he wrote, “God bless. Thank you for your courage. Keep your head up. You’ve done nothing wrong. Every rank and file police officer supports you. Don’t be discouraged by actions of the political class of law enforcement leadership.”

According to The Hill, the data breach, shared by the group Distributed Denial of Secrets, revealed that several donors had their email addresses traceable to police and public officials.