The Wisconsin police officer who shot Jacob Blake in the back leaving him paralyzed, will not face criminal charges in connection with the shooting, Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley announced on Tuesday (Jan. 5).
“No Kenosha law enforcement officer in this case will be charged with any criminal offenses based on the facts and the laws,” Graveley shared explaining that the The Wisconsin Department of Justice’s investigation concluded that Officer Rusten Sheskey fired out of self-defense.
“The question to a jury would be did Officer Sheskey reasonably believe that the shooting at Jacob Blake was necessary to prevent being stabbed by him or necessary to prevent someone else from being in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm.”
Police were responding to a domestic incident last August when they arrived at the scene and attempted to arrest Blake, 29. A woman, reportedly Blake’s girlfriend, placed an emergency call to report that he was on the property unlawfully.
Blake was unarmed, but had a knife in his vehicle, when he opened the car door with his sons inside. Sheskey grabbed Blake by the shirt and shot him several times in front of his children. Authorities claimed Blake was reaching for the knife in his car.
Gravely added that charges against Blake, who was initially handcuffed to his hospital bed, have been dropped. “I’m going to also tell you, just because I think it is important, that no charges will be filed against Jacob Blake in regards to this incident.”
“We are immensely disappointed and feel this decision failed not only Jacob and his family but the community that protested and demanded justice,” Blake’s lawyer, Benjamin Crump, tweeted in response to the decision.
“We will continue to press forward with our own investigation and fight for systematic change in policing and transparency at all levels.”
Hear more from the Kenosha D.A. in the video below.