From the Daily Signal — looks pretty balanced to me.
Swearer: Yes. This idea of who was the initial aggressor becomes important.
Wisconsin, like most states, has a law that essentially says, look, you can claim self-defense except for in two circumstances. The first is when you do something unlawful to provoke the violence, or when you do something, regardless of whether it’s lawful or unlawful, with the intent, specifically, of provoking people to attack you so that you can then use it as a guise to kill your attacker.
In those two situations, it’s provocation, and you can’t claim self-defense anymore.
Now, at least as to this idea of, was he provoking? Was he intentionally seeming to provoke the attack? I mean, it’s hard to say that when you look at the video. You have an individual who is, in the first case, actively running away and being chased.
Now it’s possible, maybe he said something or did something prior to that. I think, certainly, the state will try to argue that if he was in illegal possession of that rifle, he was doing something unlawful.
You also have this reality that I think the state is going to play into of saying, “We’re going to paint this kid as essentially showing up with a rifle planning to kill someone.” Again, “He was this white nationalist who was trying to create a situation where he could kill protesters and claim self-defense.”
It’s just so hard because you have videos from earlier in the day where he is just cleaning graffiti, saying, “Look, I’m here peacefully. My goal is not to hurt anybody.”Daily Signal