‘This is a slap in the face:’ Family of Jacob Blake reacts after no charges filed against officer

KENOSHA, Wis. — Jacob Blake’s family is calling for peaceful protests against systemic racism following the decision by the Kenosha County district attorney not to charge an officer who shot him several times in August.

Kenosha County district attorney Michael Graveley announced Tuesday he would not be pursuing criminal charges against Officer Rusten Sheskey in the shooting of Blake, who Graveley says was shot four times in the back and three times in the side.

“This is a slap in the face by Wisconsin government, and the DA,” Blake’s uncle, Justin, read in a family statement Tuesday afternoon. “What has happened here has perpetuated systemic racism.”

Shortly after the decision was announced, Blake family attorney Ben Crump released a statement saying the decision “further destroys trust in our justice system” and sends the wrong message to police officers across the country.

The Blake family urged against violence in Jacob’s name, but did say they want to see change.

“We, the Blake family, are asking this city, this county, this state and this nation to rise up in a non-violent, civic uprising,” Justin Blake said as part of the statement. “We are going to unite our people from coast to coast until we get justice, we are not backing down.”

“We need every African descendent to rise up, and those who belive Black lives matter — stand up around this nation,” Justin Blake continued. “Let’s let them know we’re not going to tolerate this anymore.”