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MDCR Director John E. Johnson Issues Statement on the Acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse

Lansing, MI -- John E. Johnson, Jr. Executive Director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, has issued the following statement on the verdict reached in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse.

"We are deeply disappointed in the decision just handed down in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse. While there may be little we can do to change the verdict in this case, we can decide how we respond. This outcome is a clear demonstration of the disparities we have long known exist in the criminal justice system. It isn't difficult to imagine a very different outcome if the defendant had been a person of color. It is my intention to let this decision motivate me and the Department I serve to redouble our efforts to lay bare these disparities and to work with those who share our concerns to diminish the racial, ethnic and gender disparities evident in our laws, our criminal and judicial practices and procedures, and in society as a whole."

The Michigan Civil Rights Commission was created by the Michigan Constitution to safeguard constitutional and legal guarantees against discrimination. The Commission is charged with investigating alleged discrimination against any person because of religion, race, color or national origin, genetic information, sex, age, marital status, height, weight, arrest record, and physical and mental disability. The Michigan Department of Civil Rights serves as the operational arm of the Commission.

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