Jacob Blake, whose shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin inspired more national protests against police brutality, spoke out for the first time since he was shot in the back seven times by a police officer. Blake was left paralyzed from the waist down and spoke from his hospital bed in the clip, shared by his lawyer, Benjamin Crump. In the clip, Blake said he has a "lot more life to live," despite his injuries.
"Your life, and not only just your life, your legs - something you need to move around and move forward in life - can be taken from you like this," Blake said in the video Crump posted on Twitter Saturday evening. "I got staples in my back, staples in my damn stomach. You don't want to have to deal with this." Blake said he is still in pain, adding that it "hurts to breathe" and to sleep.
Blake also appeared in court Friday via videoconferencing from his hospital bed, reports NBC News. He was propped up and wore a blue dress shirt with a yellow tie. He pleaded not guilty to sexual assault and disorderly conduct charges, which were filed back in July. Blake allegedly assaulted a woman on May 3 after breaking into her home and stole her truck. Blake's next court date is Oct. 21 and jury selection for the trial will start on Nov. 9. His bond was set at $10,000 and he was told not to contact the victim in the case, reports WQOW.
Blake was shot on Aug. 23 by Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey seven times in the back, as he appeared to be getting inside his SUV, with three of his sons in the back seat. Police were called to the scene for a domestic dispute, which Crump said Blake was trying to help "de-escalate." During an MSNBC interview Saturday, Crump said the officers were "the aggressors from start to finish."
Video of Blake's shooting went viral on social media, inspiring new protests in Kenosha and around the country. President Donald Trump traveled to Kenosha on Tuesday to survey the damage caused by the protests and met with local officials, but did not meet with Blake's family. Former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee for President in the 2020 election, visited Wisconsin Thursday to meet with Blake's family at Milwaukee General Mitchell Airport before visiting a Kenosha church. Blake joined the meeting from his hospital bed over the phone.