Facebook users are unable to find anything when searching for the name “Kyle Rittenhouse” in the social media platform’s search bar as the 18-year-old appears in court at his homicide trial in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Rittenhouse is charged with five felonies, including first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree reckless homicide, and first-degree attempted intentional homicide after killing two men and injuring a third during Black Lives Matter protests and riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin in August 2020.
He is also charged with possession of a dangerous weapon while under the age of 18, a misdemeanor.
The former police youth cadet is testifying in his own defense. His defense team has argued he acted in self-defense when he opened fire.
But while his trial takes place, a Facebook search for Rittenhouse turns up no results, even when using both the mobile and desktop version of the platform.
A screenshot posted by Daily Caller shows no results when “Kyle Rittenhouse” is typed into the Facebook search bar and Fox News found the same result. The Epoch Times also found the same result.
It is unclear why search results are not appearing. The Epoch Times has contacted Facebook for comment.
Bizarrely, searches with the misspelled name “Kyle Rittenhouses” showed results as did “Rittenhouse Kyle” and just the last name “Rittenhouse.”
Last year, Facebook admitted to blocking search results for “Kyle Rittenhouse” immediately following the Kenosha shooting.
“It’s not actually new,” a Facebook representative told The Verge at the time. “We block searches for a ton of stuff—for instance, child exploitation content.”
The social media giant also said it was taking proactive measures to limit information in the wake of the incident, and a spokesperson told The Verge Facebook had, “designated this shooting as a mass murder and [had] removed the shooter’s accounts from Facebook and Instagram.”
Facebook confirmed to the Daily Caller in September that it had banned all content in praise of Rittenhouse, including posts from users who argue he acted in self-defense, and had placed him on a list of “dangerous individuals and organizations.”
Vice President of Counterterrorism and Dangerous Organizations Brian Fishman also told the outlet it had removed Rittenhouse’s Facebook and Instagram accounts.