Facebook search for 'Kyle Rittenhouse' turns up nothing for users during his trial

·2 min read

Facebook users who entered the name "Kyle Rittenhouse" in the platform’s search bar are finding that no results are being displayed.

A screenshot posted by Daily Caller shows no results when "Kyle Rittenhouse" is typed into the Facebook search bar and Fox News found the same result when searching on both mobile and desktop the full name of the 18-year-old from Illinois who is currently on trial for allegedly shooting three people during a 2020 riot in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Kyle Rittenhouse is sworn in to testify during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 10, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.(Photo by Mark Hertzberg-Pool/Getty Images)
KENOSHA, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Kyle Rittenhouse is sworn in to testify during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 10, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.(Photo by Mark Hertzberg-Pool/Getty Images)

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When searching "Kyle Rittenhouse" on a mobile device, a message states that 594,000 people are talking about the trial but no results show up.

When Fox News typed in the name "Rittenhouse," many articles related to the trial appeared.

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In August of 2020, following the shooting in Kenosha that Rittenhouse on trial for, Facebook openly admitted that they were blocking search results for the name "Kyle Rittenhouse."

KENOSHA, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Kyle Rittenhouse takes a drink of water while testifying during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 10, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.(Photo by Mark Hertzberg-Pool/Getty Images)
KENOSHA, WISCONSIN - NOVEMBER 10: Kyle Rittenhouse takes a drink of water while testifying during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse on November 10, 2021 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.(Photo by Mark Hertzberg-Pool/Getty Images)

"It’s not actually new," a Facebook representative told The Verge. "We block searches for a ton of stuff – for instance, child exploitation content." When Facebook first acknowledged blocking Rittenhouse-related search results, it said it had deemed the incident a "mass murder" and removed his Facebook and Instagram accounts.

Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.

Kyle Rittenhouse took the stand on Wednesday in his ongoing trial in Kenosha County court.

Rittenhouse is charged with two counts of homicide, one count of attempted homicide, recklessly endangering safety and illegal possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18.

He was 17 when he and at least one friend said they traveled to the Wisconsin city from Illinois to protect local businesses and provide medical aid after two nights of businesses being looted and set on fire.

Rittenhouse’s attorneys have argued repeatedly that their client was acting in self-defense, and fired his semi-automatic rifle because he was being chased or faced with a gun.

The prosecution has tried to depict Rittenhouse as the person who instigated the events, including by emphasizing that he is the only person to have shot someone during the night of unrest. During trial Wednesday, Rittenhouse's defense asked the presiding judge for a mistrial with prejudice, which would end the trial and prevent Rittenhouse from facing the same charges again.

Fox News' Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report

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