Family and friends of Jacob Blake held a press conference and march in Kenosha on Monday calling for the firing of the police officer that shot Blake seven times during an Aug. 2020 confrontation that made national headlines.
More than three dozen marchers walked around the Kenosha Municipal Building on Monday to demand the termination of Officer Rusten Sheskey, who will not face charges in connection with the shooting, according to the Kenosha District Attorney’s Office.
The DA ruled that Sheskey had reason to fear for his life during the confrontation, during which Sheskey shot Blake seven times, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.
Although charges will not be filed in the case, at least at the state level, Blake’s family says that there still needs to be consequences for the officers involved in the case.
“We’re not going to stand for it,” Justin Blake, Jacob’s uncle, said. “At no time is it appropriate to shoot a citizen of any city, any county or any state in the United States in the back, not just once but seven times.”
An independent examination by the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office determined that Blake was shot four times in the back and three times in the side during the altercation.
Blake’s family says it is working to bring a complaint to the Kenosha Police and Fire Commission, which has the power to fire police officers. His family says that a resident must file the complaint to begin that process, and Justin Blake says that although he expects that complaint will be filed soon, it’s just the beginning of what the family has planned in the aftermath of last week’s decision not to charge the officers involved in the shooting.
“The Blake family is going to continue to press on through the state level and through the federal level,” he said. “This man wasn’t fired, he hasn’t been indicted yet and he’s living with his family like nothing happened. Well, something happened.”
The Blake family has said they plan to bring their case before federal lawmakers in Washington, including President-elect Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, urging them to take action to prevent similar shootings from occurring in the future.