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Jacob Blake out of hospital, now in rehab

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Jacob Blake has left a Milwaukee hospital, but he’s still working to recover after being shot several times by Kenosha, Wisconsin, police, his attorney said yesterday.

Jacob Blake has left a Milwaukee hospital, but he's still working to recover after being shot several times by Kenosha, Wisconsin, police, his attorney said yesterday.

The 29-year-old is "in a spinal injury rehabilitation centre in Chicago," attorney Patrick Cafferty said.

"I can't provide more details."

Jacob Blake

He declined to say when Mr Blake left the hospital or how long he is expected to remain in rehab.

After Mr Blake was shot multiple times during an altercation with police in August, his family initially said he was paralysed from the waist down, and it was unclear if the condition was permanent.

Attorney Ben Crump later said it would take a "miracle" for Mr Blake to walk again.

Mr Blake suffered injuries to his arm, kidney, liver and spinal cord, according to Patrick Salvi Jr, another family attorney.

Jacob Blake poses with his sons, according to his attorney.

"He had a bullet go through some or all of his spinal cord, at least one bullet," Mr Salvi said in August.

"He has holes in his stomach. He had to have nearly his entire colon and small intestines removed."

Mr Blake's father told reporters one of the first things Mr Blake asked upon regaining consciousness in the hospital was why he had been shot so many times.

Protests and calls for reform

The shooting stoked simmering national tensions over police brutality and racial injustice, spurring a continuation of the demonstrations that had erupted around the country after Minneapolis police killed George Floyd during his arrest in May.

Video showed officers trailing Mr Blake around an SUV.

As Mr Blake enters the vehicle, one of the officers pulls the tail of his shirt before unleashing seven shots.

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Mr Blake's children, aged 3, 5 and 8, were in the car. One was celebrating his birthday.

Mr Blake's family has said he posed no threat to officers, and they've expressed doubt he will see justice in his shooting. The officers involved were placed on administrative leave.

The Kenosha Professional Police Association alleges Mr Blake fought with officers, put one officer in a headlock and carried a knife he refused to drop.

Mr Blake appears to have told officers that he had a knife in his possession, the Wisconsin Department of Justice's division of criminal investigation has said.

Investigators later "recovered a knife from the driver's side floorboard" of Mr Blake's vehicle, the agency said.

Mr Salvi, one of Mr Blake's family attorneys, has refuted the police defence, saying officers had ample time to make the right decision.

"At no point in time was Jacob's momentum toward the officers, and what you see is that the officer is pulling on his shirt and then fires those seven bullets. ... If he was concerned that Jacob had a knife, why wouldn't he back away?" Mr Salvi said.

Mr Blake's father has repeatedly issued demands for police reform in the wake of his son's shooting.

"If we're not talking about laws of reform, immediately reforming some of these police, then really I don't want to speak to you at all," he told CNN last month.

'It hurts to breathe'

In August, Mr Blake delivered a message from his hospital bed, reminding his supporters that life can change in an instant.

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"Your life and not only just your life, your legs - something that you need to move around, to move forward in life - can be taken like this, man," he said in the video.

Mr Blake had staples in his back and stomach at the time, and said his pain was constant.

Jabo Blake

"It hurts to breathe. It hurts to sleep. It hurts to move side to side. It hurts to eat," he said.

"You do not want to have to deal with this."

Days earlier, he donned a dress shirt and tie for his first court appearance on charges related to an alleged assault that preceded his shooting.

He pleaded not guilty to third-degree sexual assault, criminal trespass and disorderly conduct.

A judge approved a $10,000 signature bond and scheduled his next appearance for October 21.

Source: 9News

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