Reported by PHIL SHIVER | November 16, 2021
Former Harvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz blasted liberal media outlets such as CNN and the New Yorker over the weekend for their biased and erroneous reporting on the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. The scholar said the Illinois teenager charged with killing two men and wounding another during Black Lives Matter riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last summer “should be acquitted” and then should go on the offensive against the media outlets that have branded him a white supremacist vigilante before the conclusion of his trial.
“If I were a juror, I would vote that there was reasonable doubt [and] that he did act in self-defense,” Dershowitz told Newsmax on Saturday.
“Then he’ll bring lawsuits, and that’s the way to answer … vigilante justice is what CNN is doing, not what a 17-year-old kid under pressure may have done right or wrong. It’s CNN who is involved in vigilante justice. It’s the New Yorker that’s guilty of vigilante justice,” he added.
Dershowitz compared Rittenhouse’s case to former Kentucky high school student Nicholas Sandmann, who became the target of left-wing media attacks following an encounter with a Native American activist in Washington, D.C. Sandmann later sued CNN and the Washington Post. Both the network and the paper ended up settling.
“The idea is to make the media accountable for deliberate and willful lies,” Dershowitz explained.
He added in a Sunday conversation with Breitbart’s Joel Pollak that “CNN and some of the other TV stations” are the “ones who want to put not the thumb, but the elbow on the scale of justice.”
“They want to influence the outcome of this case,” he argued. “And there are others who are threatening violence if there is anything but convictions in this case, as they threatened violence in previous cases and will in subsequent cases unless something is done about it. It’s the New Yorker and CNN that are the vigilantes. They’re the ones who are trying to influence justice without regard to evidence or the law.”
Rittenhouse is currently facing multiple felony murder charges — including first-degree intentional homicide and first-degree reckless homicide — for fatally shooting Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and wounding Gage Grosskreutz, 28.
Rittenhouse’s defense team has maintained that their client was in Kenosha on Aug. 25, 2020, to protect local businesses and provide medical aid during the uprising and that he was only acting in self-defense when he fired the shots.
Videos of the incidents seen by the public appear to show Rittenhouse being chased and physically threatened before firing his gun. The prosecution, however, argued that the defendant provoked the attacks by bringing an AR-15 to the protests.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the jury was still deliberating over the verdict.