Prosecutors have demanded that a judge force Kyle Rittenhouse’s defense team to turn over the names of everyone who donated to his legal funds or purchased the teen’s merchandise.
In an August 17 court filing reviewed by Insider, prosecutors said it’s likely that some of the people who donated to Rittenhouse are residents in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and therefore potentially part of the jury pool for his trial.
The 18-year-old is set to stand trial in November on charges of killing protesters Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum, as well as severely injuring Gaige Grosskreutz, last summer at a racial justice demonstration.
Rittenhouse, who has said he shot the men in self-defense as they chased him, quickly became a right-wing cause célèbre. He drew in enough donations to cover his $2 million bail. His family has also been selling “Free Kyle” t-shirts, beanies, and other swag through their website, FreeKyleUSA.com.
“Anyone who has donated money to the defendant’s legal defense funds or purchased products from his family’s website, FreeKyleUSA.com, is objectively biased and should be stricken for cause from serving on the jury in this case,” the Kenosha County assistant district attorney, Thomas Binger, wrote in a motion.
Specifically, Binger requested that the defense turn over the names of those who have donated to or bought from FreeKyleUSA.com and The Milo Fund LLC, which is run by Rittenhouse’s mother, Wendy.
Binger also requested the names of donors to the #FightBack Foundation, a nonprofit launched by Rittenhouse’s former lawyers: the conservative attorney John Pierce and the conspiracy theorist Lin Wood.
Though the #FightBack Foundation was originally launched to support Rittenhouse, it pivoted to funding efforts to litigate unfounded election fraud claims after the 2020 presidential election.
Rittenhouse’s family has since cut ties with the organization, and said they never received a full accounting of all the money that was raised in Rittenhouse’s name. Wood has told Insider the foundation keeps detailed financial records and never mismanaged any funds.
Rittenhouse’s attorney, Mark Richards, didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. But court records show that Richards emailed Binger on Monday and declined to provide prosecutors with the information.
“That is what [voir dire] is for,” Richards wrote to Binger. “Are you going to provide us list [sic] of all law enforcement members & families in Kenosha county. Information requested will not be forthcoming from this end.”
Richards also said in the email that he and his team had “absolutely no contact” with the #FightBack Foundation.