The Antioch police chief said that his department is preparing for civil unrest following threats against the town on social media, which was sparked after a 17-year-old Antioch boy allegedly shot three people in Kenosha.
“In response to numerous posts currently circulating on social media, the Village of Antioch would like to assure the community that we continue to make the safety of our residents, visitors, and businesses our top priority,” Antioch Police Chief Geoffrey Guttschow said Tuesday afternoon.
Guttschow said that the recent events taking place in nearby Kenosha County, Wisconsin are “certainly troubling and concerning.”
“Over the last 12 hours, we became aware of several posts that may imply that our community may experience social unrest,” Guttschow said in the statement.
“Since becoming aware of this information, the police department has devoted its full attention to evaluating every one of these posts in an attempt to determine their level of validity and credibility,” he said.
The Antioch Police Department is working in collaboration with their law enforcement partners at the local, county and state levels to ensure that the town is prepared for any impacts, Guttschow said.
“The Village fully understands how troubling and unsettling some of these messages can be. We remain committed to transparency with our community, and as such, we will continue to share as much information as possible,” he added.
The Antioch Police Department arrested Kyle H. Rittenhouse, 17, of Antioch, Wednesday morning.
Rittenhouse was charged with first-degree intentional homicide by prosecutors in Kenosha.
The shooting unfolded in the area of 63rd Street and Sheridan Road in Kenosha, Wisconsin around 11:45 p.m. Tuesday, according to police.
Video shared on social media showed a male, later identified as Rittenhouse, armed with a rifle.
A group of people can be seen tending to a person shot in the video and Rittenhouse is seen running away while on the phone saying “I just killed someone.”
Rittenhouse runs down the street and moments later trips and falls. Several people attack the teen, who then started firing shots, wounding several people.
Two of the victims were pronounced dead and a third suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries, Kenosha police said.
Rittenhouse got up off the ground and began walking down the street with his hands up towards several police vehicles, the video shows.
The police cars and SWAT trucks drive past Rittenhouse towards the area where the shooting happened.
Rittenhouse left the area and returned to his home in Antioch, where he was later arrested, authorities said.
The shooting occurred during the third night of civil unrest after Kenosha police shot Jacob Blake several times over the weekend.
Several hundred members of the Wisconsin National Guard have been deployed to Kenosha following the unrest.
Rittenhouse appeared in bond court Wednesday morning and remains held at the Depke Juvenile Complex Center in Vernon Hills. He is scheduled to appear in court on Friday.
“Our Village of Antioch is deeply saddened by all loss of life. Our hearts and prayers extend to the friends and family who lost a loved one,” said Antioch Mayor Lawrence Hanson.
Police are asking that any concerning posts on social media should be sent to the Village of Antioch Police Department on Facebook messenger.