UPDATE: No criminal charges will be file against any officer involved in the shooting of Jacob Blake, the district attorney announced. Read more here.
Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley is set to hold a press conference Tuesday to announce whether or not the officer who shot Jacob Blake over the summer in a shooting that sparked days of protests and unrest will face criminal charges.
The city and county have been preparing for days ahead of the highly anticipated decision, with both activists and officials calling for peace and nonviolent responses to the announcement.
Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian was granted emergency powers by the Kenosha City Council Monday as officials braced for expected unrest following the decision.
The mayor and the Kenosha police department have indicated that they plan to institute curfews if necessary, designate demonstration spaces, limit city bus routes, close down roads and impose other safety restrictions if need be.
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers also activated the state’s National Guard on Monday to provide assistance to local law enforcement in the event of unrest.
The moves are similar to measures the city instituted in wake of Blake's shooting, which took place in August 2020 and was captured on video.
In the shooting Blake, who is Black, was shot in the back seven times after walking away from Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey and two other officers who were trying to arrest him. Blake was shot after he opened the driver’s side door of an SUV and leaned into the vehicle, and the shooting was captured on cell phone video.
The shooting left Blake paralyzed from the waist down and set off a nationwide firestorm of controversy. In Kenosha, protests and demonstrations began almost immediately, and several nights of looting and vandalism also took place.
Activists have asked residents and demonstrators to avoid a repeat after the Blake decision is handed down, calling for non-violent demonstrations.
“We want everyone to come out and be as loud as they want, but we don’t want destruction of property,” activist Tanya McLean said. “We’re for non-violence. Anything else isn’t acceptable for this community.”