Kenosha, Wisconsin – According to Kenosha police, three people were shot late Tuesday night during a protest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake Jr. Shots were fired around 11:45 p.m. leaving two people dead and one seriously injured.
Witnesses said the shootings occurred after a confrontation between protesters and armed men who said they were protecting a gas station.
The encounter began after police dispersed protesters who were allegedly launching fireworks at officers protecting the Kenosha County Courthouse. Police responded with tear gas, causing protesters to flee in the direction of the gas station, where they were met by armed men — members of what police described as vigilante militia groups that have descended on the city.
Video shared online shows a young White man carrying a rifle running away from a crowd of protestors before he falls to the ground and appears to fire multiple rounds at them. Other video shows armed civilians, many dressed in military fatigues, congregating outside businesses they said they were protecting.
Footage also shows people running through the streets as gunshots ring out, and wounded men on the ground.
Suspected white supremacists are shooting random people in #KenoshaPosted by Antar Gholar on Wednesday, August 26, 2020
*GRAPHIC* THIS IS INSANE IN KENOSHAThe shooter shot someone in the head, went running and then the group of people he was with tried to take the weapon away and that’s when he shot these people. Photo of the guy in the comments, IDENTIFY HIM.I was screen recording CJ TVPosted by Brooke Matelski on Tuesday, August 25, 2020
Two more people fell to the ground, one shot in the arm and the other in the chest, the Journal Sentinel reported. Another graphic video shows a man with blood running down the back of his neck and bystanders shouting that he had been shot in the head.
Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that police are searching for a man seen in video footage holding a long gun.
“I feel very confident we’ll have him in a very short time,” Beth said.
Protests in Kenosha have been on going since Sunday, after a video showing police shoot 29-year-old Jacob Blake several times as he tried to get into a car with his children inside. Although Blake survived the shooting, his family said he is paralyzed and still in critical condition.
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers said on Tuesday he was sending more National Guard troops to the city amid the unrest.