The trial of Kyle Rittenhouse took another significant turn during closing arguments this week.
Reports indicate that the defendant’s attorneys are requesting a mistrial and claim the prosecution failed to turn over high-resolution versions of evidence presented to the jury.
Defense presents its motion
As Fox News explained, defense attorneys Mark Richards and Corey Chirafisi moved for the mistrial on Wednesday and are asking the judge to grant a mistrial with prejudice — meaning that prosecutors would not be able to try Rittenhouse again on the same charges.
In their motion, Rittenhouse’s lawyers argue that prosecutors only provided them with a 3.6-megabyte version of a drone video clip shown to the jury and kept an 11.2-megabyte version for themselves.
Richards and Chirafisi asserted that they were not given the higher-resolution version until after the time to present evidence in the trial had elapsed. It was shortly thereafter — during the trial’s closing arguments — that the prosecution decided to present the evidence to jurors.
For their part, prosecutors claim it was a technological mix-up.
Specifically, they assert that the defense unintentionally received a compressed version of the footage when it was transferred from an iPhone to an Android smartphone.
The jury is still out
Prosecutors further argued that it would not be their fault under any circumstances since the defense did not ask for the full-resolution video.
The matter is now in the hands of Judge Bruce Schroeder, who is said to be waiting to see if the jury will request the drone footage before making its ruling.
Thus far, the judge has indicated that a new evidentiary hearing might be necessary to resolve the mistrial motion, noting that such a hearing would likely require expert testimony. It seems unlikely that Schroeder will grant the motion with prejudice, however, meaning that Rittenhouse’s fate is almost certain to ultimately lie in the hands of 12 jurors.
The case has drawn national attention as the 18-year-old defendant faces charges stemming from a shooting that left two dead and another injured during a riot in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year.
As of this writing, the jury was still undecided after about two days of deliberation.