The judge presiding over the trial of accused Kenosha, Wisconsin shooter Kyle Rittenhouse dealt a significant blow to the prosecution on Monday when he dismissed the misdemeanor charge of possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18 years of age.

The indictment was widely anticipated to be an easy conviction for Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger, who represents the state.

“So consider, for example, whether or not it’s heroic or honorable to provoke and shoot unarmed people,” the prosecutor said during closing arguments. “They enjoy the thrill of going around and telling people what to do, without the courage or the honor to back it up and without the legal authority to do so.” 

But before the state’s final case could be made, Judge Bruce Schroeder tossed the weapons charge, citing exceptions to the law that typically forbids minors from possessing firearms under certain circumstances.

Still, Rittenhouse is facing five additional charges of intentional and attempted homicide in the deaths of Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum and the injury of Gaige Grosskreutz.

Due to the explosive nature of the case, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) has stationed 500 National Guard Troops on standby patrol to respond to potential chaos when a final verdict is delivered, whichever way the jury goes.

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