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Fact Check- Claim Kyle Rittenhouse filed a lawsuit against The View co-hosts stems from satire

Update December 1, 2021: Correcting spelling in last name in paragraph 7.

An article by a satirical website that says Kyle Rittenhouse has “filed a $60M defamation lawsuit” against co-hosts of ABC’s talk show The View Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg has been taken seriously by social media users.

A jury acquitted teenager Rittenhouse on Nov. 19 of murder in the fatal shooting of two men in a trial that highlighted divisions over gun rights and stirred fierce debate about the boundaries of self-defense in the United States ( here ).

The piece, entitled “Rittenhouses File $60M Defamation Suit Against Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldgerg” (sic) was published on PotatriotsUnite.com a “subsidiary” of America’s Last Line of Defense, a popular satirical network. ( here )

The website describes itself ( here ) as part of a “network of parody, satire, and tomfoolery.” The page also says that “everything on this website is fiction.”

But the claim has since spread across social media ( here , here , here , here ) and other websites ( here ), without mention of it being satire.

Comments from social media users include: “Best news ever,” “i can’t wait to watch this. LETS GO KYLE” and “They are always calling for accountability...”

Rittenhouse’s lawyer Mark Richards told Reuters via email the claim is “not true.”

David Hancock, a spokesperson for the Rittenhouse family, told the Associated Press ( here ) that “The Rittenhouse team, Kyle and the rest of his lawyers, have not filed any legal actions against any organizations or any person in particular.”

Reuters has previously debunked claims taken seriously by social media users that originated from the America’s Last Line of Defense network ( here , here , here , here ).

The jury found Rittenhouse, 18, not guilty on all charges: two counts of homicide, one count of attempted homicide for wounding a third man, and two counts of recklessly endangering safety during racial justice protests marred by arson, rioting and looting on Aug. 25, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Other Reuters fact checks debunking claims surrounding the Rittenhouse trial are viewable here, here, here, here.

VERDICT

Satire. Claims that Kyle Rittenhouse filed a defamation lawsuit against Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg originated as satire.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts here .

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