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Jacob Blake: Father says son shot 'eight times' by police is 'paralysed from the waist down'

Protests broke out in the city of Kenosha after 29-year-old Jacob Blake was shot.

Updated Aug 25th 2020, 5:55 PM

2.55150666 Source: PA Images

THE FATHER OF a black man who was shot by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, says his son has been left paralysed from the waist down.

Jacob Blake’s father told the Chicago Sun-Times that he was told his son was shot eight times during the confrontation with police on Sunday evening, which was captured on mobile phone video and led to two nights of unrest in the city between Milwaukee and Chicago.

The father, who is also named Jacob Blake and who was driving from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Kenosha to be with his son, told the newspaper that he learned on Sunday night that officers had shot his son eight times and that he saw the now-viral video of it online a few minutes later that appears to show police shoot his son in the back.

2.55150660 A protester sits on a car in the city of Kenosha.

He said his son now has “eight holes” in his body and is paralysed from the waist down, though doctors do not know if the paralysis will be permanent.

Anger over the shooting spilled into the streets of Kenosha for a second night on last  night, with police again firing tear gas at hundreds of protesters who defied a curfew, threw bottles and shot fireworks at law enforcement officers guarding the courthouse.

The Wisconsin city became the United States’ latest flashpoint in a summer of racial unrest after mobile phone footage of police shooting Mr Blake as he leaned into his vehicle – apparently while three of his children were sitting in it – circulated widely on social media. The 29-year-old is in hospital in serious condition.

2.55149043 Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian tries to speak to protesters. Source: Morry Gash/AP

The shooting drew condemnation from Democratic governor Tony Evers, who also called out 125 members of the National Guard after protesters set cars on fire, smashed windows and clashed with officers in riot gear the previous night.

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Police first fired tear gas about 30 minutes after the 8pm curfew took effect to disperse protesters who chanted, “No justice, no peace” as they confronted a line of officers who wore protective gear and stood shoulder-to-shoulder in front of the courthouse entrance.

But hundreds of people stuck around, screaming at police and lighting fires, including to a garbage lorry near the courthouse.

The governor said that he has seen no information to suggest Mr Blake had a knife or other weapon, but that the case is still being investigated by the state Justice Department.

The officers were placed on administrative leave, standard practice in a shooting by police.

Authorities released no details about the officers or their service records.

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