Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Sunday harshly criticized prosecutors with the Kenosha County District Attorney’s Office for bringing charges against Kyle Rittenhouse, telling Fox News that the evidence clearly did not support such a move.
Rittenhouse, now 18, shot three men, killing two of them and wounding the third, during a protest against police brutality in Kenosha, Wisc., last year. He was acquitted of all charges Friday after pleading self-defense in the shootings.
“I was a prosecutor for seven years, and those charges should never have been brought,” Christie said.
“Prosecutors are not supposed to give in to the whims of the public… You’re supposed to dispassionately look at the facts and the evidence and decide whether they support charges. And from the beginning, I didn’t think that these acts supported charges.”
The former New Jersey governor added that “anybody who looked at the videos of this could tell that this was an act of self-defense. Anyone who knows the law would know that. Yet you’ve had legal folks on the air, and on other networks, and political commentators and, quite frankly, elected officials who spoke so irresponsibly and horribly about this young man without a basis in fact.”
Christie stressed that he is “so proud of our justice system,” saying “that the jury sat there, not affected by public pressure, but sat and listened to the evidence and made the decision that they did.”
He added that the jury system “gave Kyle Rittenhouse a chance that all these other talking heads on television didn’t give him. They had him convicted a long time ago.”
Christie said that now that the trial is over, “I hope that everyone will leave this young man alone now and let him go to living his life. He should not become a political symbol for anybody. He’s 18 years old. He should be allowed to now go on and live his life after what has been an extraordinarily difficult time for both Kyle Rittenhouse and his family.”