Parents of Jacob Blake says they are praying for police officers and denounce ‘violence and destruction’ that has rocked Kenosha in the wake of his shooting as lawyers say ‘it will take a miracle’ for him to walk again
- Julia Jackson and Jacob Blake Sr spoke out against their son’s shooting by cops in a press conference Tuesday
- The 29-year-old was shot seven times in the back by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Sunday
- Family attorney Ben Crump revealed Blake Jr is now paralyzed and it will take a ‘miracle’ for him to walk again
- Blake’s mother Julia condemned the riots that have rocked the city since the shooting, and pleaded for unity
- She said she’s praying for everyone involved – including police officers
- Video of police shooting Blake – apparently in the back as he leaned into his SUV while his three children sat in the vehicle – circulated widely on social media
- A second cellphone video that emerged later appeared to show Blake wrestling with two officers beside the SUV prior to the shooting
- Anger over the shooting spilled into the streets of Kenosha for a second night Monday with police firing tear gas at hundreds of protesters defying a curfew
The parents of Jacob Blake have spoken out against the ‘violence and destruction’ that has rocked Kenosha, Wisconsin in response to their son’s shooting by police, and said they’re praying for all involved, including police officers.
In an emotional press conference on Tuesday, Julia Jackson and Jacob Blake Sr spoke publicly for the first time since police officers shot their son multiple times in the back as he entered his car on Sunday.
‘They shot my son seven times, seven times, like he didn’t matter,’ Blake Sr said tearfully as he spoke to reporters alongside other family members and lawyers.
‘But my son matters. He’s a human being and he matters.’
Jackson said, ‘Citizens, police officers, firemen, clergy, politicians: do Jacob justice on this level and examine your hearts. We need healing. As I pray for my son’s healing, physically, emotionally and spiritually, I also have been praying, even before this, for the healing of our country.’
The family’s attorney Ben Crump, who is also representing the family of George Floyd, revealed Blake was undergoing surgery, adding that the bullets severed his spinal cord, shattered his vertebrae and severely damaged his organs.
‘It’s going to take a miracle for Jacob Blake Jr. to ever walk again,’ Crump said.
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Jacob Blake’s parents, Jacob Blake Sr (center) and Julia Jackson (second from right), arrived with family members outside the County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Tuesday for a press conference following their son’s shooting by police
Blake’s mother Julia Jackson (left) denounced the ‘violence and destruction’ that has rocked the city of Kenosha in the wake of the shooting and pleaded for calm on Tuesday. His father Jacob Blake Sr (right) became emotional as he spoke out against the cops who shot his son seven times
Jacob Blake was shot in the back by Wisconsin police on Sunday as his three young sons watched on. He is now paralyzed from the waist down after his body was riddled with bullets, his father says. Blake is pictured above being treated just moments after the shooting
Blake, who is a father of six, is now in a stable condition in hospital after undergoing surgery
The shooting was captured on cellphone video and has ignited new protests over racial injustice in several cities, just three months after the death of Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police touched off a wider reckoning on race.
Heavily armed civilians were filmed protecting businesses in Kenosha after arsonists set buildings alight, torching much of the black business district Monday.
Blake’s mother Julia during the press conference condemned the violence saying it did not reflect the feelings and values of their family and pleaded for calm and ‘healing’.
‘As I drove through the city, I noticed a lot of damage. It doesn’t reflect my son or my family,’ Jackson said, holding back tears.
‘If Jacob knew what was going on, as far as that goes, the violence and the destruction, he would be very unpleased. So I really am asking and encouraging everyone in Wisconsin and abroad to take a moment and examine your hearts.
Jackson also denounced the racial tensions that have plagued the country and called for unity among all races.
‘How dare we hate what we are. We are humans. God did not make one type of tree or flower or fish or grass or rock. How dare we you ask him to make one type of human that looks just like you,’ she said.
‘I am not talking to just Caucasian people. I am talking to everyone. White, black, Japanese, Chinese, red, brown. No one is superior to the other. The only supreme being is God himself. Please, let’s begin to pray for healing for our nation.’
Civil rights attorney Ben Crump updated the public on Blake’s condition adding that it’s ‘going to take a miracle for Jacob Blake Jr to ever walk again’
Kenosha firefighter puts out hot spots near the corner of 22nd street and Roosevelt Street in Kenosha, following another night of rioting in the city that stem from the shooting of Jacob Blake by police
Volunteers pitch in to help with clean up at B&L Office Furniture Inc. on 60th Street in Kenosha after the riots
She also revealed that the first thing her son said to her when she saw him was that he was sorry.
‘He said, “I don’t want to be a burden on you guys”,’ Jackson said. ‘”I want to be with my children, and I don’t think I’ll walk again.”‘
Three of the younger Blake’s sons – aged three, five and eight – were in the car at the time of the shooting, Crump said. It was the eight-year-old’s birthday, he added.
Lawyers for the family also described the extent of Blake’s injuries revealing he now has holes in stomach and is currently undergoing surgery.
‘He had a bullet go through some of all his spinal cord. He has holes in his stomach, he had to have nearly his entire colon, small intestines removed, damage to kidney and liver, and was shot in the arm,’ Attorney Patrick Salvi said.
‘Jacob has a long road ahead of him. Not going to be his last surgery. Long road to recovery. We are going to hope and pray for as good as a recovery as we can get. Jacob is going to fight hard.’
The legal team plans to file a civil lawsuit against the police department over the shooting. Police have said little about what happened, other than that they were responding to a domestic dispute.
The officers involved have not been named. The Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating.
Cars burn at a small car dealership. It was set on fire the previous night with most of the vehicles being destroyed in the fire. Protesters came back the following night to finish burning the vehicles over the police shooting of Jacob Blake
he State of Wisconsin Department of Corrections building burns as flames engulf the facility that was set on fire by protesters over the police shooting of Jacob Blake
A city block was cordoned off Tuesday, so officials could survey damage. Several storefronts were badly damaged. Smoke filled the air and visibility was low as firefighters used water cannons on still smoldering buildings
After a night during which protests devolved into unrest, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers called for calm Tuesday, while also declaring a state of emergency under which he doubled the National Guard deployment in Kenosha from 125 to 250.
The night before crowds destroyed dozens of buildings and set more than 30 fires in the southeastern Wisconsin city’s downtown.
‘We cannot allow the cycle of systemic racism and injustice to continue,’ said Evers, who is facing mounting pressure from Republicans over his handling of the unrest.
‘We also cannot continue going down this path of damage and destruction.’
It comes after the emergence of a second video, which was taken from a different angle to the initial cellphone footage, that appears to show Blake wrestling with officers in the lead up to the shooting.
Both videos capture Blake walking to the driver’s side of his SUV and opening the door when the officer started shooting.
Blake’s father said he learned Sunday night that officers had shot his son and that he saw the now-viral cellphone video of the incident online just a few minutes later.
‘What justified all those shots?’ his father said. ‘What justified doing that in front of my grandsons? What are we doing?
‘I want to put my hand on my son’s cheek and kiss him on his forehead, and then I’ll be OK. I’ll kiss him with my mask. The first thing I want to do is touch my son.’
The police shooting of Blake in front of his three young sons has led to two nights of violent unrest in the city that is located between Milwaukee and Chicago
A second cellphone video that emerged later appeared to show Blake wrestling with two officers beside the SUV prior to the shooting
Blake and at least two officers were filmed wrestling with each other on the pavement near his SUV, according to this second video
After the first video went viral on social media, a second cellphone video emerged that appeared to show Blake wrestling with at least two officers beside the SUV prior to the shooting.
Blake managed to break free and was shown in the video walking to the driver’s side of his SUV.
Both videos show the moment Blake walked from the sidewalk around the front of his SUV to his driver-side door while officers followed him with their guns pointed as they shouted at him.
As Blake opened the door and leaned into the SUV where his three children – aged 8, 5 and 3 – were, an officer grabbed his shirt from behind and opened fire while Blake had his back turned. At least seven shots could be heard.
The officers involved have since been placed on administrative leave, which is standard practice in a shooting by police. Authorities released no details about the officers.
Kenosha police do not have body cameras but do have body microphones.
The man who said he made the initial cellphone video, 22-year-old Raysean White, said he saw Blake scuffling with three officers and heard them yell: ‘Drop the knife! Drop the knife!’ before the gunfire erupted. He said he didn’t see a knife in Blake’s hands.
White said that before the gunfire, he looked out his window and saw six or seven women shouting at each other on the sidewalk.
A few moments later, Blake drove up in his SUV and told his son, who was standing nearby, to get in the vehicle, according to White. White said Blake did not say anything to the women.
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
Donnell and Tamika Lauderdale were spotted washing the blood off the road on Monday after Blake was shot a day earlier
White said he left the window for a few minutes, and when he came back, saw three officers wrestling with Blake. One punched Blake in the ribs, and another used a stun gun on him, White said. He said Blake got free and started walking away as officers yelled about a knife.
Civil rights attorney Ben Crump, representing Blake’s family, said Blake was ‘simply trying to do the right thing by intervening in a domestic incident.’
According to online records, Kenosha County prosecutors recently charged Blake with third-degree sexual assault, trespassing, and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse
Police did not immediately confirm either man’s account. They did, however, confirm they were responding to a call about a domestic dispute when they encountered Blake.
Blake’s fiancee, Laquisha Booker, told 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.
Blake’s father told the Chicago Sun Times that his son also has three other children.
Anger over the shooting spilled into the streets of Kenosha for a second night on Monday, with police again firing tear gas at hundreds of protesters who defied a curfew, threw bottles and shot fireworks at law enforcement guarding the courthouse.
Crump, who has also represented the families of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, said Blake’s family has asked that demonstrations in response to his shooting remain peaceful.
‘They don’t believe violence to be the solution,’ he said.
The shooting drew condemnation from Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, who also called out 125 members of the National Guard on Monday after protesters set cars on fire, smashed windows and clashed with officers in riot gear the previous night.
The governor said he has seen no information to suggest Blake had a knife or other weapon, but that the case is still being investigated by the state Justice Department.
Evers was quick to condemn the bloodshed, saying that while not all details were known ‘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 presidential nominee Joe Biden said the officers ‘must be held accountable.’
Anger over the shooting spilled into the streets of Kenosha for a second night on Monday, with police again firing tear gas at hundreds of protesters who defied a curfew
Demonstrators throw tear gas back at law enforcement on August 24. Hours into the curfew, the mostly peaceful demonstration turned violent. Commercial and government buildings were set ablaze, along with vehicles in car dealership lots
Law enforcement officers face angry crowds during a second night of unrest in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake
Police attempt to push back protesters outside the Kenosha County Courthouse late on Monday
Protestores took turns posing in front of a burning garbage truck during a second night of unrest in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake by police officers
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
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 decried the violent protests, echoing the law-and-order theme that President Donald Trump has been using in his reelection campaign.
The shooting drew condemnation from Democratic Gov. Tony Evers, who also called out 125 members of the National Guard on Monday after protesters set cars on fire, smashed windows and clashed with officers in riot gear the previous night
‘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.’
Details have since emerged about Blake’s criminal past, including a recent arrest for sexual assault.
According to online records, Kenosha County prosecutors charged Blake with third-degree sexual assault, trespassing, and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse.
It was unclear whether that case had anything to do with the shooting.
In 2015, Blake was also charged with resisting arrest and carrying a concealed weapon after he pulled a gun at a local bar in Racine.
Blake’s grandfather, Jacob Blake Sr., was a prominent minister and civil rights leader in the Chicago area who helped organize a march and spoke in support of a comprehensive housing law in Evanston, Illinois, days after the 1968 slaying of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
Rachel Noerdlinger, publicist for the National Action Network, told The Associated Press that the Rev. Al Sharpton spoke on Monday to Blake’s father, who called the civil rights leader for his support.
Blake’s father will speak at Sharpton’s March on Washington commemoration on Friday, Noerdlinger said.
Karissa Lewis, national field director of Movement for Black Lives, a coalition of more than 150 Black-led organizations that make up the broader Black Lives Matter movement, said the shooting was yet another example of why activists have called for defunding police departments.
‘There’s no amount of training or reform that can teach a police officer that it’s wrong to shoot a Black man in the back seven times while his children watch,’ Lewis said.
The letters ‘BLM’ are emblazoned in blood-red paint on the outside of a vandalized jewelry store in downtown Kenosha
One local business hit particularly hard by the unruly scenes was Car Source, a local automobile dealership
The interior of a burned out restaurant is seen on Monday after a night of unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Kenosha residents woke Monday morning to broken and charred storefronts, with dozens of cars and trucks in the street burnt out, such as this one above
Protesters hold signs supporting Black Lives Matter during a demonstration in front of the Kenosha County Court House on Monday
Sheriff’s officers in riot gear stand guard outside the Kenosha County Court House where protesters gathered on Monday
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