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The judge in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial on Friday said he’ll instruct the jury that unless the state proved the teen’s AR-15-style rifle had an unlawfully short barrel, he can’t be convicted of being a minor in possession of a firearm.

No such evidence was introduced, so it seems likely Rittenhouse will be acquitted on the one charge that seemed obvious to everyone but his lawyers who challenged it from the very start. It might not even get to the jury.

Rittenhouse was 17 when he killed two people and wounded a third during protests in Kenosha in August 2020. He testified he feared for his own life in each instance.

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