FACT CHECK: Is The Alleged Kenosha Shooter’s Father A Deputy In The Kenosha Sheriff’s Office?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A viral Facebook post claims alleged Kenosha, Wisconsin, shooter Kyle Rittenhouse’s father works as a deputy in the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office.

Verdict: False

The last name Rittenhouse does not appear in the county’s staff directory. A spokesperson for the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office said the alleged shooter’s father does not and has never worked for the sheriff’s office.

Fact Check:

The city of Kenosha has experienced unrest following the Aug. 23 shooting of Jacob Blake by police. During the third night of riots, Kyle Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old from Illinois, allegedly shot three people, killing two, according to the criminal complaint.

A viral post alleges Kyle Rittenhouse’s father serves as a deputy for the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office, saying, “Wondering about Kyle Rittenhouse’s father? Call the Kenosha Sheriff’s Dept and ask Deputy Rittenhouse.” (RELATED: Viral Image Claims Jacob Blake Sexually Assaulted A 14-Year-Old)

While little information about Kyle Rittenhouse’s father is available online, there is no indication he works for the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office. No one with the last name Rittenhouse appears on the sheriff’s department’s staff list online. Searching the county’s staff directory also didn’t turn up any matches for the surname.

The Daily Caller News Foundation reached out to both the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office and the Kenosha Police Department. A spokesperson for the Kenosha Sheriff’s Office confirmed to the DCNF in a phone call that the alleged shooter’s father does not and has never worked in the sheriff’s office.

“If he was an employee of the City of Kenosha, in any capacity, I am certain I would know about it,” Lt. Joseph Nosalik, a public information officer for the Kenosha Police Department, said in an email to the DCNF. “I do not have any information that would confirm that rumor.”

The Washington Post reported that Kyle Rittenhouse lives with his single mother, Wendy Rittenhouse, in Antioch, a village located just south of the Wisconsin border. His now-deleted Facebook page showed support for the Blue Lives Matter movement, and he was a former public safety cadet, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Wendy Rittenhouse took one Michael Rittenhouse to court for child support in 2014, Lake County court records show. A copy of the complaint filed in relation to the case that the DCNF obtained describes the man as the “responsible relative” obligated to support Kyle Rittenhouse “by virtue of a presumption arising from marriage.” The date of birth listed for Kyle Rittenhouse in the child support complaint matches that in the criminal complaint against the 17-year-old.

Kyle Rittenhouse has been charged with two counts of first-degree homicide and one count of attempted homicide, among other charges, according to the criminal complaint.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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