Even without the video evidence, it was clear that Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth was lying through his teeth about not having watched the Jacob Blake police shooting video, a weak attempt at plausible deniability that was proven to be a lie within hours.
“I think I answered, I did not see the video,” said Sheriff Beth, his eyes darting uncomfortably across the room.
“You have never seen that cell phone video?” the reporter asked.
Not sure whether to nod or shake his head, he did both and abruptly ended the press conference.
It didn’t take long for video evidence to surface showing him watching what is said to be the video after he was handed a smartphone by a bystander in the aftermath of the shooting last Sunday.
The video shows the sheriff holding the phone to his face and it is clear by the commentary around him that he is watching the video in question.
Lying cops are nothing new, of course, most are just smoother than the sheriff.
Sheriff David along with Kenosha Police Chief Daniel Miskinis have been coming under intense scrutiny following the shooting of Blake, a 29-year-old man that was left paralyzed from the waist down after he was shot seven times in the back by Kenosha police officer Rusten Sheskey, which led to protests and riots.
Initially it was reported that Blake was breaking up a fight but now police are saying they had a warrant for his arrest on sexual abuse charges. Police are also saying they found a knife on the floorboard of the car and that is all it usually takes to be cleared of all wrongdoing but there is no indication or evidence he was threatening them with the knife. There is also no body cam footage because they refused to buy them a few years ago despite a resolution from the city council urging them to do so in 2017.
Both the Wisconsin ACLU and National ACLU are calling for their resignations based on the following:
Sheriff David Beth’s deputies not only fraternized with white supremacist counter-protesters on Tuesday, but allowed the shooter to leave as people yelled that he was the shooter. The sheriff excused this by saying his deputies may not have paid attention to the gunman because there were many distractions, including “screaming” and “hollering,” people running, police vehicles idling, “nonstop radio traffic,” and that “in situations that are high stress, you have such an incredible tunnel vision.” Sheriff Beth was also criticized last year after calling for five people of color who had been arrested for shoplifting to be put into warehouses “where we put these people who have been deemed to be no longer an asset.”
During the Kenosha Police Department’s first press conference in response to the Blake shooting and subsequent murders committed at protests, Police Chief Daniel Miskinis blamed the unidentified victims in Tuesday night’s shooting for their own deaths, saying the violence was the result of the “persons” involved violating curfew.
“The ACLU strongly condemns Sheriff Beth and Police Chief Miskinis’ response to both the attempted murder of Jacob Blake and the protests demanding justice for him. Their actions uphold and defend white supremacy, while demonizing people who were murdered for exercising their First Amendment rights and speaking out against police violence,” said Chris Ott, Executive Director of the ACLU of Wisconsin. “The only way to rectify these actions is for both Sheriff Beth and Police Chief Daniel Miskinis to immediately tender their resignations.”
Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian said on Friday, the day after the ACLU press release, that he will not be calling for the resignations of the two top cops, according to Kenosha News.