Lindsey Graham said Tuesday that the black man who was shot seven times by Wisconsin police on Sunday should have ‘yielded’ when law enforcement instructed him to do so.
‘I don’t know what happened there. Let’s find out. It’s dangerous being a cop,’ Graham told reporters during a press conference with the South Carolina Fraternal Order of Police Tuesday. ‘I don’t know why the gentleman didn’t yield when he was asked to yield. I don’t know what the facts are.’
The organization, which supports law enforcement officers, held the briefing to endorse the senator, who is facing a tough reelection race in November.
acob Blake, 29, was shot by a Kenosha, Wisconsin police officer Sunday around 5:00 p.m. as he was responding to calls of a ‘domestic incident,’ the Kenosha Police Department said in a news release.
‘Police are not above the law,’ Graham continued. ‘There are places where police act with impunity. This is not one of those nations.’
South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham said Tuesday that Jacob Blake, the man who was shot seven times by police on Sunday, should have ‘yielded’ to law enforcement when he was told to do so +37
‘I don’t know why the gentleman didn’t yield when he was asked to yield,” Graham said. “I don’t know what the facts are.’ Graham spoke at an event where he was being endorsed by the South Carolina Fraternal Order of Police+37
The comments come as nation outraged was sparked over Jacob Blake being shot seven times by a white police officer. Video of the incident appears to show him ignoring police as they followed him with guns drawn
Graham is facing a hotly contested reelection race in November against Jaime Harrison in a state that is 30 per cent black
The South Carolina senator is in a hotly contested race against Democrat Jamie Harrison in a state that is 30 per cent black, but there has not been a Democratic senator elected there since 1998.
Polls also put Graham and his competitor in a near tie.
Graham has been one of President Donald Trump’s biggest defenders, especially when it comes to ‘law & order’ in the midst of months of civil unrest and Black Lives Matter protests and riots.
Cell phone video captured the officer shooting Blake seven times as he leaned into a vehicle, which his three children were in at the time.
It is unclear from the audio whether police officers asked Blake to yield, but it does show the officer tugging on Blake’s shirt.
Newly released footage from a different angle also shows that Blake and several Kenosha officers got into a physical tussle moments before the shooting.
Amateur video shows the events leading up to the shooting – though the footage is taken from the opposite angle of the initial viral cell phone clip where Blake is seen walking toward his SUV with an officer’s gun pointed on him.
In the latest video, Blake is seen wrestling with at least two Kenosha police officers.
Newly revealed Amateur cell phone video shot from a different angle on Sunday shows Blake entangled in a physical altercation with at least two police officers in Kenosha, Wisconsin+37
The video shows Blake managing to extricate himself from the officers’ grasp. Blake (seen above in the white shirt) then walks around the SUV to the driver’s side while the police officers follow him with guns drawn+37
Within moments, after Blake opens the door, gunshots are heard and the video footage ends
Blake then manages to break free from the mayhem and begins to walk from the passenger’s side of his SUV to the driver’s side.
As he opens the driver’s side door, gunshots ring out. The video ends there.
The officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave and are said to be cooperating with investigators, according to the Wisconsin Department of Justice.
The state DOJ has launched an investigation into the shooting.
Blake is now in stable condition after undergoing surgery at Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee.
His father, also named Jacob Blake, said his son has ‘eight holes’ in his body and has been left paralyzed from the waist down – although he claimed doctors do not know if the paralysis is permanent.
Video of the shooting of Blake quickly went viral, with angered protesters setting cars on fire, smashing windows and clashing with officers dressed in riot gear across the city throughout Sunday evening and into the early hours of Monday.
Meanwhile, the police union representing officers on the Kenosha police force released a statement on Monday criticizing Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, who immediately condemned the ‘excessive force’ used by the cops.
‘Anytime deadly force is used, our hearts go out to those affected by it,’ Pete Deates, president of the Kenosha Professional Police Association, said in a statement.
‘We assure you an independent investigation is being conducted by the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Investigation.+37
Jacob Blake lies on the street after he got shot following a police shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Sunday+37
Massive protests and riots broke out in Kenosha. People gather in front of the Kenosha County Court House to protest against the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Monday+37
Sheriff’s officers in riot gear stand guard outside the Kenosha County Court House where protesters gathered on Monday+37
A Kenosha Police officer gets in the middle of protesters shoving each other who were trying to enter the Safety Building when they were denied access for a news conference on Monday
‘Until that investigation is completed, we ask that you withhold prejudgment about the incident and please the let process take place.
‘Governor Evers’ statement on the incident was wholly irresponsible and not reflective of the hardworking members of the law enforcement community, not to mention the citizens of the City of Kenosha.
‘As always, the video currently circulating does not capture all the intricacies of a highly dynamic incident. We ask that you withhold from passing judgement until all the facts are known and released.
‘We, along with the citizens of the great City of Kenosha, ask for peace and to let the process play out fairly and impartially.’
Meanwhile, photographs show the devastating aftermath of a night of violent protests spurred by the police shooting of an unarmed black man in Kenosha on Sunday that turned the city into the nation’s latest flashpoint in a summer of racial unrest.+37
Diana Graves, longtime resident of Kenosha, holds a flag in protest of the unrest in her community+37
A march begins on Monday at the location where Jacob Blake was shot by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, a day earlier+37
Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian speaks outside the Public Safety Building in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Monday+37
An armed protester takes part in a demonstration near the Kenosha County Court House on Monday
In a bid to stave off another night of chaos, Evers, a Democrat, said 125 members of the National Guard would be in Kenosha on Monday night with responsibility for ‘guarding infrastructure and making sure our firefighters and others involved are protected.’
The Kenosha Police Department declared a state-of-emergency curfew for Monday night beginning at 8pm until 7am the following morning, according to a post on the police department’s Twitter feed.
The moves come after rioting and looting erupted in the wake of the shooting on Sunday.
Shocking pictures from downtown Kenosha captured on Monday showed dozens of burned out cars lining the streets, several businesses decimated by vandalism and numerous others looted and marred with graffiti. +37
Shocking pictures from downtown Kenosha captured on Monday showed dozens of burned out cars lining the streets, several businesses decimated by vandalism and numerous others looted +37
The interior of a burned out restaurant is seen on Monday after a night of unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin+37
One local business hit particularly hard by the unruly scenes was Car Source, a local automobile dealership+37
Wisconsin’s governor summoned the National Guard to head off another round of violent protests Monday after the police shooting of an unarmed black man in Kenosha turned the city into the nation’s latest flashpoint in a summer of racial unrest
Kenosha residents woke Monday morning to broken and charred storefronts, with dozens of burnt out cars and trucks lining the street.
One local business hit particularly hard by the unruly scenes was Car Source, a local automobile dealership.
The front lot of the building, typically filled with rows of pre-owned four-wheel offerings, instead resembled a scrap heap Monday, with charred metal remains and other debris scattered out-front.
The dealership is located just blocks from the Kenosha County Courthouse, which was also badly damaged in the riots.
The owners spoke to CBS about their ‘devastation’ to have awoken this morning to find their business destroyed.
A video appears to show multiple fires set throughout the car lot as car horns and loud bangs can be heard blaring in the background.
The fire continues to spread farther throughout the parking lot as smoke billows from the area and at least one small explosion can be seen.
The city’s downtown area was closed Monday ‘due to damage sustained during last night’s civil unrest,’ according to a post on Kenosha County Government’s Facebook. +37
A dump truck that was parked at an intersection to prevent traffic from moving toward the police department was also set on fire+37
The letters ‘BLM’ are emblazoned in blood-red paint on the outside of a vandalized jewelry store in downtown Kenosha+37
A vandalized city police car is shown outside Kenosha County Public Safety Building in downtown Kenosha
Workers board up windows and doors of a hotel and local academy in anticipation of more chaos on Monday night
Elsewhere overnight, one Kenosha police officer was filmed collapsing to the ground face-first close to where Blake was shot after being struck by a brick that was thrown towards cops during a stand-off.
‘He just got bricked! He just got bricked!’ someone close to the person recording screams, as others in the mob cheer, clap and shout anti-cop sentiments.
In a bid to stave off another night of chaos, Democratic Gov. Tony Evers said 125 members of the National Guard would be in Kenosha on Monday night with responsibility for ‘guarding infrastructure and making sure our firefighters and others involved are protected.’
Several other protesters jumped on top of police squad cars and smashed windows in separate footage from the scene.
Another clip shows a row of protesters walking toward a line of police officers clad in riot gear as simmering tensions threaten to escalate the situation.
A dump truck that was parked at an intersection to prevent traffic from moving toward the police department was also set on fire.
In the video of the incident that spared the outrage, three officers could be seen shouting and pointing their weapons at Blake, who walked around the front of an SUV parked on the street.
As Blake opened the driver’s side door and leaned inside, one officer grabbed his shirt from behind and then fired into the vehicle.
At least seven shots could be heard, though it was unclear if more than one officer fired.
Blake’s three children were inside the SUV and watched as their father was gunned down, the family’s attorney, Ben Crump, confirmed.
The images above show the moments leading up to the shooting. Blake (seen in the white shirt) walks away from a police officer who has his gun drawn and is ordering him to stop+37
The image above shows the moment a Kenosha, Wisconsin, police officer fired at least seven shots into the back of Jacob Blake as he was getting into an SUV in a residential neighborhood+37
‘They kills us because they fear us, honor the dead’, a scrawl of graffiti reads on the wall of the Kenosha County Court House
Several witnesses said that Blake tried to break up a fight between two women outside a nearby home, according to Kenosha News.
Before resorting to gunfire, the police attempted to subdue Blake with a Taser, to no avail, it was reported.
Benjamin Crump shared video of the incident on his Twitter feed, and confirmed today he is now representing Blake’s family, and will ‘demand answers’ from police.
‘We all watched the horrific video of Jacob Blake being shot in the back several times by Kenosha Police. Even worse, his three sons witnessed their father collapse after being riddled with bullets.
‘Their irresponsible, reckless and inhumane actions nearly cost the life of a man who was simply trying to do the right thing by intervening in a domestic incident. It’s a miracle he’s alive.’
The officers were placed on administrative leave, standard practice in a shooting by police, while the state Justice Department investigates. And Kenosha County imposed an 8 p.m. curfew to try to head off another round of violence Monday night.
Crump is the attorney who represents the family of George Floyd, the 46-year-old black man who died in the custody of Minneapolis police in late May.
Floyd’s death ignited massive nationwide protests and rioting as millions took to the streets over the course of several weeks to demand the police officers responsible be tried and convicted.+37
Blake is seen far left with his three children. Witnesses said all three of his kids were in the back seat of the SUV when their father was shot+37
A dump truck that was parked in an intersection so as to prevent protesters from reaching a police station was set on fire on Sunday+37
A man confronts police outside the Kenosha Police Department late on Sunday night+37
Angry residents gathered near the scene of the shooting in Kenosha on Sunday night
In a statement denouncing the Kenosha shooting, Gov. Evers said: ‘While we do not have all of the details yet, what we know for certain is that he is not the first Black man or person to have been shot or injured or mercilessly killed at the hands of individuals in law enforcement in our state or our country.’
Democratic nominee Joe Biden also responded in outrage of ‘yet another’ example of excessive force against the African America community, calling for an ‘immediate, full and transparent investigation.’
‘This morning, the nation wakes up yet again with grief and outrage that yet another Black American is a victim of excessive force,’ he said, just over two months before Election Day in a country already roiled by the recent deaths of Floyd, Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta and Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky. ‘Those shots pierce the soul of our nation.’
Biden added that the officers ‘must be held accountable’ for the shooting.
Republicans and the police union accused the politicians of rushing to judgment, reflecting the deep partisan divide in Wisconsin, a key presidential battleground state. Wisconsin GOP members also decried the violent protests, echoing the law-and-order theme that President Donald Trump has been using in his reelection campaign.
‘As always, the video currently circulating does not capture all the intricacies of a highly dynamic incident,’ Pete Deates president of the Kenosha police union, said in a statement. He called the governor´s statement ‘wholly irresponsible.’
Online court records indicate Kenosha County prosecutors charged Blake on July 6 with sexual assault, trespassing and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse. An arrest warrant was issued the following day. The records contain no further details and do not list an attorney for Blake.
It was unclear whether that case had anything to do with the shooting.+37
A man records cell phone video as tear gas is used on protesters outside the Kenosha Police Department
Laquisha Booker, who is Blake´s partner, told NBC´s Milwaukee affiliate, WTMJ-TV, that the couple’s three children were in the back seat of the SUV when police shot him.
‘That man just literally grabbed him by his shirt and looked the other way and was just shooting him. With the kids in the back screaming. Screaming,’ Booker said.
Crump, meanwhile, called the officers’ actions ‘irresponsible, reckless and inhumane’.
Wisconsin´s Republican Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke cautioned the public and elected officials against ‘racing towards judgment,’ given how few details were known.
‘The frustration & anger that many in our communities are feeling must be met with empathy, but cannot be further fueled by politicians´ statements or actions that can stoke flames of violence,’ tweeted Steineke, who is white.’
Kenosha burns: BLM protesters set light to department of corrections building and local businesses while looters run riot for second night in defiance of the National Guard deployed to restore order following Jacob Blake police shooting
Rioters set fire to car dealerships, furniture stores, dump trucks, and a Department of Corrections building while protesters clashed with National Guardsmen as Kenosha, Wisconsin, descended into violent chaos on Monday.
The unrest entered its second day as outrage grows over the police shooting on Sunday of an unarmed black man in front of his home.
Jacob Blake, 29, is listed in serious condition in a Milwaukee hospital after a Kenosha police officer fired seven shots into his back while responding to a domestic disturbance call.
A city garbage truck burns during a second night of unrest in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake by police officers, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Monday
An American flag flies over a department of correction building that was lit on fire in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Monday
Video of the shooting went viral on social media on Sunday, igniting widespread outrage three months after the death of George Floyd.
Wisconsin’s governor called out the National Guard on Monday, and police skirmished with protesters who defied a curfew to take to the streets.
Protesters chanted, ‘No justice, no peace’ as they confronted a line of law enforcement officers who wore protective gear and stood shoulder-to-shoulder in front of the courthouse entrance.
Law enforcement officers face angry crowds during a second night of unrest in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake
Protesters come face to face with police clad in riot gear in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Monday
Police first fired the tear gas about 30 minutes after the 8pm curfew took effect and protesters refused to disperse.
But hundreds of people stuck around, lighting fires and screaming at police.
It is thought that the city, which is home to around 100,000 people, has so far lost a mattress store, church, Mexican restaurant and a cellphone shop in the raging fires, according to witnesses.
Scores of protesters amassed outside the courthouse shouting and tossing water bottles at a line of sheriff’s deputies, who responded with volleys of tear gas and pepper balls.
At least one sheriff’s deputy has suffered a neck injury by a firework that was set off by protesters, according to the New York Times.
It is uncertain whether there have been any arrests.