Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey, who shot and paralyzed Jacob Blake last summer, was suspended for three days earlier this year because his borrowed service weapon was stolen mere weeks after he repeatedly shot Blake. It has taken officials seven months to investigate. Meanwhile the weapon has still not been recovered.
Blake was shot on August 23, 2020. Investigators from the Wisconsin Department of Justice seized the weapon Shesky used to shoot Blake. The officer was given a loaner weapon while he remained on the job. On September 15, Sheskey reported that his borrowed Glock 17 service weapon had since been stolen from his girlfriend’s vehicle.
The April 2021 gun theft investigation came three months after Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley announced he would not seek criminal charges against Sheskey for shooting Blake.
Kenosha Police Lt. Joseph Nosalik said in a television interview that the Kenosha police chief had all the information about the theft but wanted to see what the decision regarding charges would be. After Shesky returned to work on March 31, Nosalik said the chief authorized the investigation into the gun theft.
TV station WISN reported Sheskey told investigators he regularly left the weapon in his girlfriend’s locked vehicle. The officer said he had secure locations for firearms at his Kenosha home, but after receiving death threats he moved and “did not have an opportunity to provide a safe location inside the home in which he was now living in.”
Sheskey was suspended for three days without pay for the infraction.
Sheskey shot Jacob Blake seven times after he and two other Kenosha officers tried to arrest Blake on an outstanding warrant. Blake picked up a pocketknife which fell from his pants before trying to return to his vehicle. Blake said he was going to surrender once putting the knife into his car. Sheskey claimed that he was fearful for his own safety.
The Blake shooting happened just three months after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for nearly ten minutes. Chauvin was convicted of murder and manslaughter charges last month.
BET has been covering every angle of the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and other social justice cases and the subsequent aftermath and protests. For our continuing coverage, click here.
Photo courtesy of Wisconsin Department of Justice
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