Race and right to bear arms hang heavy over trial of teen gunman

Seventeen-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse is in the dock for the shootings of three men during a riot in Wisconsin, but accusations of racial bias are flying thick and fast even before the proceedings begin

Kyle Rittenhouse: currently one of the most polarising figures in a bitterly divided America. Picture: Getty

On August 25, 2020, seventeen-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse drove from his home in Illinois to Kenosha, a town in the neighbouring state of Wisconsin.

Armed with an AR-15-style assault weapon that a friend had purchased illegally on his behalf, he was responding to a social media call from a white militia group that exhorted armed males to assemble in downtown Kenosha to protect the white business district from rioters and Black Lives Matter protesters.

It was ...