07:29 GMT22 October 2020
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    Wisconsin authorities announced earlier that a probe by the state Department of Justice into the shooting of Black man Jacob Blake from Kenosha by a white police officer in August would soon be turned over to a retired police chief serving as an independent consultant for review.

    A lawyer representing Rusten Sheskey has stated that the police officer was not only defending his own life when he discharged his weapon seven times at Jacob Blake last month in Kenosha, Wisconsin, but was trying to prevent a kidnapping, reported CNN.

    According to attorney Brendan Matthews, deadly force was used by the police officer during the encounter because he feared that Blake, who had an outstanding warrant, might abduct a child in the backseat of the vehicle while attempting to flee the scene.

    "He's got my kid. He's got my keys," Sheskey reportedly heard a woman say.

    If the police officer had failed to act promptly and some harm had come to the child "the question would have been “why didn't you do something?”” said the lawyer.

    Blake, a black man from Kenosha, Wisconsin, was shot in the back by the white police officer after attempting to escape from three others who were trying to arrest him.

    Jacob had leaned into his SUV with his children inside it on 23 August, when officer Rusten Sheskey shot him seven times in the back.

    The incident was captured on camera by a passer-by, quickly going viral and eventually sparking several nights of unrest in Kenosha.

    According to the man who filmed the footage, Blake scuffled with three officers who were reportedly heard shouting "drop the knife", before the shots resounded. A knife was subsequently recovered from Blake's vehicle, but it was not immediately clear if he held it during the altercation with police.

    ‘Inaccurate Narrative’

    Matthews was cited by the outlet as feeling compelled to elaborate on the "incomplete, inaccurate" narrative pertaining to the events involving his client, he also sought to dispel claims by Blake's family and lawyers that the man was unarmed and posed no threat to the officers at the time of the shooting.

    At the time Sheskey opened fire, the lawyer said, Blake held a knife in his hand and had turned toward the officer, although this is not immediately visible in the viral video, as he was in part obscured by the door of the vehicle.

    Jacob Blake released this powerful video message from his hospital bed today, reminding everyone just how precious life i
    © Photo : Ben Crump/twitter
    Jacob Blake released this powerful video message from his hospital bed today, reminding everyone just how precious life is

    Matthews was cited as saying that a second officer at the scene, whom he also represents, gave a similar account of the incident and said he would have opened fire himself if he had had a clear angle.
    There has not yet been a comment from Jacob Blake’s attorney, Benjamin Crump.

    Decision to Shoot

    Sheskey's decision to shoot Blake, who has been left paralyzed from his waist down, has been highly scrutinized amid widespread condemnation as yet another unjustified shooting of a Black person by police.

    A man walks by an armoured vehicle as B&L Office Furniture burns in the background as protests turn to fires after a Black man, identified as Jacob Blake, was shot several times by police last night in Kenosha, Wisconsin, U.S. August 24, 2020. Picture taken August 24, 2020.
    © REUTERS / STEPHEN MATUREN
    A man walks by an armoured vehicle as B&L Office Furniture burns in the background as protests turn to fires after a Black man, identified as Jacob Blake, was shot several times by police last night in Kenosha, Wisconsin, U.S. August 24, 2020. Picture taken August 24, 2020.

    Authorities in Wisconsin announced this week that the results of an investigation conducted by the state Department of Justice would shortly be handed over to a retired police chief serving as an independent consultant for his review.

    The latter is then to forward the case to local prosecutors, complete with an analysis seeking to help determine whether criminal charges against Sheskey are warranted.

    The police officer is currently on paid administrative leave.

     

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    '24 Hours, Nothing But Pain': Jacob Blake Speaks in Public for First Time Since Being Shot by Police
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    Shooting, Shooting, Police, police, Kenosha
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