Witness in Rittenhouse Trial Testifies Prosecution Asked Him to 'Change' His Statement

Nick Kangadis | November 9, 2021
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It's like the prosecution in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse want to lose the case, because they just keep stepping on landmines that they seemingly set up.

During witness testimony on Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney James Kraus didn't get the answer he was either looking for or expecting when questioning freelance photojournalist Nathan DeBruin.

Kraus asked DeBruin about details concerning his statements for both the Rittenhouse trials and the case of Joshua Ziminski, the man who was charged with "disorderly conduct and use of a dangerous weapon" after firing his weapon into the air before the Rittenhouse incident occurred on August 25 in Kenosha during the Black Lives Matter riots. Ziminski is also facing arson charges, as well.

"We had you read over your statement, right?" Kraus asked DeBruin.

"Correct," DeBruin responded.

"And we asked if you knew anything beyond that statement?" Kraus followed up.

"Correct," DeBruin said.

"We didn't ask you to change it?" Kraus asked, almost sounding confused.

"Yes, you did," DeBruin answered.

Related: Oops! Prosecution's 'Star' Witness Admits Rittenhouse Didn't Shoot Until He Pointed His Own Gun at Him

The prosecution then attempted to paint DeBruin as not understanding what the prosecutors were asking of him at the time of his statement, with DeBruin acknowledging that while they never "specifically" asked him to add anything about Rittenhouse in his statement, he did feel he was asked to "alter" it after prosecutors showed him a "cell phone" video. Although, it's not clear what video DeBruin was referencing - whether it was video of Ziminski or Rittenhouse.

The following exchange during DeBruin's cross-examination by Kraus gives more context as to how DeBruin perceived what was being asked of him by prosecutors, namely Kenosha Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger.

Kraus: So we never asked you to put anything in about or change anything about Kyle Rittenhouse?

DeBruin: Not specifically, no.

Kraus: Because Kyle Rittenhouse, that name doesn’t even appear in your statement, does it?

DeBruin: I don’t think so. Not to my knowledge.

Kraus: And so, the discussion about changing statements, did we actually ask you to retype your statement out?

DeBruin: No.

Kraus: So what do you mean we asked you to change it?

DeBruin: I’m assuming, there wasn’t details, but I’m assuming either add Kyle’s name or — because I was also shown a video off of a cell phone by Mr. Binger. I don’t know what video, or whose video that was, but it was of the shooting, and that’s when I was asked if I wanted to add anything else to that statement. And I said no.

Kraus: And you took that literally, like, actually writing out your statement?

DeBruin: Yeah.

Kraus: You did not take that to mean, ‘Is there anything your statement doesn’t cover or that we should know?’

DeBruin: No.

Kraus: You [unintelligible] literally we would retype the statement that you took November 11?

DeBruin: Well, he didn’t say retype it, but he said, ‘Do I want to add anything to how I interpret that?’ And that’s pretty much altering my statement, and I felt uneasy about that.

For the specific exchange on DeBruin possibly being asked to "alter" his statement, watch below:

 

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