Kenosha chaos: Gunfire rings out, vigilantes take to streets after Wisconsin governor reportedly refuses additional troops

Police and emergency officials work at an active shooter scene at the Molson Coors headquarters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, February 26, 2020. Mark Hoffman/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/USA TODAY NETWORK via REUTERS

Citizens in Kenosha, Wisconsin have taken it upon themselves to protect local businesses amid ongoing riots and unrest, with armed vigilantes seen taking to rooftops and storefronts to ward off looting and vandalism.

Kenosha saw its third consecutive night of disorder on Tuesday, sparked after the police shooting of 29-year-old Jacob Blake, a black man, during a domestic ordeal over the weekend. Protests hours after the incident soon boiled into riots, seeing looters ransack countless businesses on Monday, while arsonists ignited some 37 fires.


The chaos in the city has yet to reach the levels seen the night prior, with armed citizens taking up positions around the city, including on rooftops, to protect local businesses.

Multiple armed men are on the roof of one of the car lots that was burned in Kenosha, WI:

— Shelby Talcott (@ShelbyTalcott) August 26, 2020

KENOSHA: with law enforcement incapable of defending private property Armed groups have begun protecting the city from rioters This man claimed they were friends of the business owner & were carrying only lethal roundsThey successful defended the property from the roof

— ELIJAH RIOT (@ElijahSchaffer) August 26, 2020

Local business owners are armed protecting their business from rioters and vandals

— Drew Hernandez (@livesmattershow) August 26, 2020

A number of protesters also appeared to be armed in videos that made the rounds online. One livestream captured a shooting in which a young man was said to have been hit in the chest. He was seen being loaded into a car which soon fled the scene, but his current status, and the extent of his injuries, remain unclear. A second person was also reportedly hit in the incident, but it is unknown whether either were affiliated with the protests or merely bystanders.

🚨🚨🚨: Multiple gunshots are fired after people chased a guy with a rifle. Rifle dude tripped and fell. He fired his gun at a guy who jumped on top of him.

— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) August 26, 2020

The terrorists are armed for war

— Kitty Shackleford (@KittyLists) August 26, 2020

Protesters have ignited several small fires, though in some cases other demonstrators were seen extinguishing them. In contrast to previous nights, no major acts of arson were reported, however.

“make it bigger, make it bigger” #BLM rioters begin lighting the first fires of the night in the streets of #KENOSHAA boogaloo boy puts it out

— ELIJAH RIOT (@ElijahSchaffer) August 26, 2020

NOT TODAY ANTIFA: Citizens of #Kenosha are fighting back and trying to stop criminal arson

— Drew Hernandez (@livesmattershow) August 26, 2020

While looting and arson appeared less widespread, clashes again erupted between protesters and police on Tuesday, seeing activists hurl fireworks, bricks and other projectiles at officers, who responded with copious tear gas.

People in the crowd are launching bricks and officers are deploying crowd control munitions. It’s a battle out here

— Shelby Talcott (@ShelbyTalcott) August 26, 2020

Rioters are getting mopped up quickly by Sheriffs in #Kenosha Rioters are throwing explosive projectiles at vehicles

— Drew Hernandez (@livesmattershow) August 26, 2020

After BLM and Antifa rioters began to throw projectiles Officers begin to deploy tear gas Rioters then flee like roaches

— Drew Hernandez (@livesmattershow) August 26, 2020

A major courthouse in Kenosha was the scene of many of the clashes, where police have maintained a heavier presence than elsewhere in the city, erecting a barricade around the building.

Wisconsin: #Kenosha county courthouse under siege by #Antifa#BLM, Associated group, & individuals. Laser, projectiles, Morten fireworks, shields and frontline defense tactics are being used to provoke response from National Guard.

— Kalen From Scriberr (@FromKalen) August 26, 2020

Rioters are trying to tear down the fence outside the Kenosha County Courthouse…

— LA America🇺🇸 (@LavinyAsocUSA) August 26, 2020

National Guard troops have also been deployed to the courthouse for a second night, after Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers signed an executive order doubling the Guard’s presence in the city from 125 to 250 personnel and declaring a state of emergency amid the continued riots. According to Trump communications advisor Ben Williamson, local law enforcement had requested a force of 750 Guardsmen, and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows offered Evers 500 additional troops, but the governor reportedly refused. Evers has yet to address the allegation.



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