Lawmaker Proposes 'Kyle's Law' in Honor of Kyle Rittenhouse
A Tennessee legislator says that he wants to be sure that what happened to Kyle Rittenhouse in Wisconsin never happens in Tennessee, and has drafted a proposal he calls “Kyle’s Law” to make sure of it.
Republican state Rep. Bruce Griffey said the intent of HB1769 is to “balance the scales out a little bit here,” according to WKRN-TV in Nashville.
Rittenhouse was found innocent of all charges filed against him after an incident that took place during the Kenosha, Wisconsin, riots in August 2020. Rittenhouse said that he was acting in self-defense when he killed two men and wounded a third.
“I think we all saw what happened. He was attacked. He was defending himself and the jury found that,” Griffey said, according to WKRN.
“And despite that – he was still prosecuted for a murder charge. This law is intended to sort of protect that from happening in the future,” he said.
The bill requires that if a defendant who is accused of homicide is acquitted on the grounds of self-defense, that state must pay that person’s legal fees. The bill would not allow those engaged in criminal conduct at the time of being charged to get a penny.
“I think it’s a reasonable response to make sure citizens are protected from malicious prosecutions or being prosecuted when there’s not really enough evidence in the case to pursue a criminal charge against them,” said Griffey.
“They have to go through hiring a lawyer, hiring experts, lost wages – all costs to them. That’s not a fair system,” he said.
In a statement to WZTV-TV in Nashville, Griffey said that his bottom line is that what happened to Rittenhouse should never to any American.
“Kyle Rittenhouse had to defend himself not only against a first-degree murder charge over the course of a year-plus politically-motivated prosecution and a two-week jury trial, but also against widespread defamation and false branding by corrupt media outlets, simply for exercising his American, God-given right to self-defense,” the statement said.
“Luckily, Kyle Rittenhouse was rightfully acquitted of all charges, but not after thousands of dollars were expended on attorney fees for his legal defense, reputational damage was incurred and emotional stress was suffered.
“Kyle Rittenhouse can never fully be made whole for what he was forced to endure, but under the law I’m proposing, if someone in TN is placed in the same situation as Kyle Rittenhouse in the future, he/she can at least be financially compensated. My bill will help deter what happened to Kyle Rittenhouse from happening to someone in Tennessee and will help protect the right of Tennesseans to self-defense.”
Democrats are aghast.
“This is a serious lack of respect for and lack of trust for publicly elected officials and district attorneys nationwide,” said Democratic state Rep. John Ray Clemmons, according to WKRN.
“This individual wants to mischaracterize the exploits and murderous conduct of this out-of-state individual to try to score political points. It’s offensive. It really should never see the light of day,” he said.
But Griffey, an outspoken conservative, is undeterred. According to WZTV, He is also seeking to have a proclamation passed by the state legislature honoring Rittenhouse as “a hero who selflessly defended his community, protected businesses, and acted lawfully in the face of lawlessness.”
Rittenhouse, the proclamation says, is “a symbol of things that the Left is trying to destroy—our Constitution and our Second Amendment gun rights,” who “provides a light of hope that we can fight back against the enemies of our Constitution and win.”
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