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Wisconsin authorities release preliminary findings in Blake shooting

The Wisconsin Department of Justice (WDOJ) released preliminary findings on Wednesday regarding the circumstances that led to the shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, WI early this week; information that is bound to displease those who want to see the police charged with attempted murder.

“Kenosha Police Department officers were dispatched to a residence in the 2800 block of 40th Street after a female caller reported that her boyfriend was present and was not supposed to be on the premises, says a statement from the WDOJ.

While the WDOJ never specified who the boyfriend was, the dispatch audio indicates that only three minutes elapsed from the time police arrived until the shooting, so Blake would be the logical suspect.

The police tried to arrest Blake using a taser, but the taser was ineffectual and Blake tried to get into his car despite attempts by officers to restrain him.

“Mr. Blake walked around his vehicle, opened the driver’s side door, and leaned forward. While holding onto Mr. Blake’s shirt, Officer Rusten Sheskey fired his service weapon 7 times. Officer Sheskey fired the weapon into Mr. Blake’s back. No other officer fired their weapon. Kenosha Police Department does not have body cameras, therefore the officers were not wearing body cameras,” says the statement.

Police, says the WDOJ, later found a knife on the driver’s side floorboard of Blake’s car. It’s not clear if the knife was there because Blake dropped it when he was shot, or if the knife just happened to be on the floorboard.

“During the investigation following the initial incident, Mr. Blake admitted that he had a knife in his possession. DCI agents recovered a knife from the driver’s side floorboard of Mr. Blake’s vehicle. A search of the vehicle located no additional weapons,” said the WDOJ.  

Authorities didn’t say if the police knew that Blake had a weapon in the car, or if he had one on his person at the time of the shooting.

The Wisconsin authorities are being assisted in the investigation by the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice, which has opened up a civil rights investigation into the incident.

All the officers at the scene have been placed on leave pending the completion of the investigation.

The WDOJ promises to finish its investigation within 30 days.

Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) also released a statement asking all people to refrain from violence.

“Times like this call for our leaders to unify people. We must come together, in good faith, to work toward positive change. Sowing division can be deadly, and we must condemn those—especially those at the highest level of government—who seek to do so,” said Kaul in a statement, seemingly to blame Donald Trump for Blake’s shooting.

“While those who seek to divide people may have the biggest megaphones and attract the most attention, they do not speak for the vast majority of us who seek greater unity, common ground, and justice,” he added.

And neither does Kaul.

PHOTO: AP Photo/Morry Gash

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