Judge Locks MSNBC Out of Kenosha Courthouse

Freelancer may have been following jury's van
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 18, 2021 4:34 PM CST
Judge Locks MSNBC Out of Kenosha Courthouse
Seth Warichak, left, stands outside the Kenosha County Courthouse on Thursday.   (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

(Newser) – While the jury in the Kyle Rittenhouse homicide trial is deliberating, the judge decided to bar MSNBC crews from the Wisconsin courthouse. The order followed reports that a network freelancer may have been following a bus carrying jurors, Fox News reports. Judge Bruce Schroeder said Thursday that the freelancer was about a block behind the bus the night before when he was pulled over after running a red light. He said he was following instructions from a producer in New York, the judge said.

"I have instructed that no one from MSNBC News will be permitted in this building for the duration of this trial," Schroeder announced. "This is a very serious matter and I don’t know what the ultimate truth of it is, but absolutely it would go without much thinking that someone who is following the jury bus—that is an extremely serious matter and will be referred to the proper authorities for further action." An NBC spokesperson said the freelancer didn't contact any jury members or photograph them. "We regret the incident and will fully cooperate with the authorities on any investigation," the spokesperson said.

The Kenosha Police Department tweeted Thursday that it's investigating, per CNN, and that there "was no breach of security regarding the jury." Also on Thursday, the local school district announced that five schools have gone to remote learning for the rest of the week because of safety concerns. National Guard troops are on standby in the area, should violence follow the announcement of the verdicts. (Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz says he might hire Rittenhouse as an intern.)

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