Supporters of teen shooter Kyle Rittenhouse raised over $300,000 on a Christian crowdfunding website, overshooting the original $200,000 target. The fundraising platform GiveSendGo said it now aimed for $500,000 in donations to pay the legal expenses of Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old who was charged with the killing of two people and injuring one during the violent unrest in Wisconsin.
Over 7,000 people donated money for Rittenhouse as of Tuesday. The campaign said the teen was "unfairly" charged with murder and he "just defended himself" from the protesters.
"We not only made it to our initial goal of a $200K, we've now made it to our stretch of a quarter million dollars! ... We couldn't have done this without you, so, from the bottom of my heart, thank you so much. Let's see if we can make to $500K!" an update on the fundraiser read.
Support from Conservatives
Rittenhouse's actions were defended by conservatives who tried to raise money for the teen. Arizona State University's College Republicans United said it will donate half of its funds to the teen shooter's legal expenses.
A GoFundMe fundraiser was set up for Rittenhouse to collect money for his legal fees, but the campaign was deleted by the website on the grounds of violation of the company's terms of service. This prompted his legal team from #FightBack Foundation to set up their fundraising campaign.
According to videos and interviews, Rittenhouse was armed with an AR-15 style rifle and considered himself as a militia member who sought to protect businesses in Kenosha on the night when he fired shots at protesters. Two people – Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber – were killed in the firing, while a third victim, Gaige Grosskreutz, was injured. The teen was arrested on Aug. 26 from his house in Illinois and was extradited to Wisconsin after allegedly opening fire on protesters in Kenosha.
Rittenhouse will be tried as an adult with two counts of first-degree homicide and one count of attempted homicide. The Antioch native was also faced charges related to possession of a weapon despite being below 18 years of age and recklessly endangering two other victims.