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Kenosha unrest

Man facing charge for firing gun in air before Rittenhouse shootings now charged with arson

A man who was earlier charged with firing a gun into the air just before Kyle Rittenhouse shot three people during protests in Kenosha was charged Tuesday with arson, alleged to have set a dumpster on fire.

Warning: Video footage contains explicit language. 

Joshua Ziminski, 35, of Racine, was charged with arson of property other than a building, a felony, and disorderly conduct-use of a dangerous weapon. His wife Kelly Ziminski, 30, was charged in December with several misdemeanors for her actions at the same time.

The charges filed Tuesday allege the couple were at the protests on Aug. 25. According to the complaint, video on Kelly Ziminski’s phone showed Joshua Ziminski tossing a match into a dumpster and then asking the crowd for lighter fluid to help the fire spread. He then pushed the dumpster into Sheridan Road as police vehicles were moving toward him. Kelly Ziminski is seen on video adding flammable material to the fire, according to the complaint.

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In another video, according to the complaint, Joshua Ziminski is seen near a trailer that is overturned and on fire in the 5800 block of Sheridan Road “manipulating the fire with his right foot.”

In October, Joshua Ziminski was charged with disorderly conduct–use of a dangerous weapon, alleged to have fired a handgun into the air during protests on Aug. 25. That shot occurred near the intersection of Sheridan Road and 60th Street just before Rittenhouse — who was in the same area — is alleged to have shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, of Kenosha.

Rittenhouse is also accused of killing Anthony Huber, 26, of Silver Lake, and shooting and injuring Gaige Grosskreutz, 26, of West Allis that night. Rittenhouse contends he was acting in self defense when the shootings occurred.

Prosecutors on Tuesday dropped the October charge against Joshua Ziminski, filing the new felony arson charge along with the disorderly conduct-use of dangerous weapon charge the same day.

Joshua Ziminski’s bond was set at $1,000.


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