CHICAGO — Four suspects are in custody after a live Facebook video showed a special needs teenager being bound, tortured and taunted by African American youth who yelled, “[Expletive] white people!”
Chicago police state that the 30-minute physical assault shows the bound 18-year-old with his mouth duct-taped having his clothes and scalp cut with a knife until he bled, while those that gather around him laugh, drink and sprinkle cigarette ashes on him.
The four suspects repeatedly struck the mentally challenged teen, calling out, “[Expletive] Donald Trump! [Expletive] white people!” as well as “Beat his [expletive]” and “He gonna be a corpse.” They also forced the victim, who they called a “goof-[expletive] white man,” to say “[Expletive] Trump” and “I love black people.”
Captain Steven Sesso told reporters that following the attack, the teen was found wandering the streets of Chicago “in distress.”
“He was traumatized fairly good,” also outlined Police Commander Kevin Duffin. “It took most of the night for him to calm down and talk to us.”
The teen was transported to an area hospital to receive treatment for his injuries and to recover from the trauma. His parents had reported him missing prior to the incident, and according to CNN, they stated that they began receiving texts from someone who claimed to be “holding him captive.” He had been with the group for 24 hours.
Officers were later made aware of a Facebook video that live-streamed the torturing of a man, and were able to connect the two incidents. It is believed that one of the females involved in the assault had filmed the crime.
Chicago police now have four 18-year-olds in custody—two male and two female—and are considering filing hate crime charges against the perpetrators.
“Although they are adults, they’re 18. Kids make stupid decisions—I shouldn’t call them kids; they’re legally adults, but they’re young adults, and they make stupid decisions,” Duffin said at a press conference on Wednesday. “That certainly will be part of whether or not … we seek a hate crime, to determine whether or not this is sincere or just stupid ranting and raving.”
“It was sickening. It makes you wonder what would make individuals treat somebody like that?” Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson also remarked. “I’ve been a cop for 28 years, and I’ve seen things that you shouldn’t see in a lifetime, but it still amazes me how you still see things that you just should see.”
“Thanks to the outstanding work of the 11th district police officers and area north detectives all four offenders from the incident are in police custody and awaiting formal charges,” he said. “The victim, who is not a Chicago resident, is currently recovering from the incident.”
The teen allegedly knew one of his attackers from school, however.
Facebook has now deleted the video as being a violation of its policies.
“We do not allow people to celebrate or glorify crimes on Facebook and have removed the original video for this reason,” it told reporters. “In many instances, though, when people share this type of content, they are doing so to condemn violence or raise awareness about it. In that case, the video would be allowed.”