Three teenagers and a 24-year-old woman have been charged with a hate crime after an apparent violent assault on a man with special needs was streamed live on Facebook.
Assailants in the footage shouted “fuck Donald Trump” and “fuck white people”.
The victim, also 18, was allegedly bound, gagged and tortured during the ordeal, which lasted at least 24 hours and could have been as long as 48 hours.
Jordan Hill, 18, Tesfaye Cooper, 18, Brittany Covington, 18, and Tanishia Covington, 24, also face charges of aggravated kidnapping, aggravated unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, according to WGN.
Hill, Cooper, and Covington were also charged with residential burglary. Hill was also accused of robbery and possession of a stolen motor vehicle.
The victim has not been named.
The attackers slashed the victim’s clothes with a knife and cut his hair so close that it made his scalp bleed.
The disturbing footage, which police called “sickening”, also showed the assailants beating the victim and dumping ashes on him.
The suspects yelled “fuck Donald Trump” and “fuck white people, boy” at the victim. It is not clear if the victim was a supporter of the president-elect.
At one point, one of the suspects looked into the camera and addressed the people watching via Facebook.
“If any one of y’all got a problem with this, I’m gonna tie y’all bitch ass up too.” he yelled.
Police said the victim had special needs and described him as a “high risk missing person”.
He was reported missing from the Chicago suburb of Crystal Lake. When police found him in the city on Wednesday, he was disoriented and wearing shorts, despite the freezing temperature.
“It didn’t seem right,” Chicago Police Capt. Steven Sesso said at a Wednesday news conference.
Officers took the victim to an area hospital, where he is recovering, and later connected him to the disturbing video.
The victim was reportedly an acquaintance of at least one of the suspects.
They took him into the city in a stolen van, Chicago Police Commander Kevin Duffin said. It is not clear if the victim was kidnapped or willingly went with the suspects.
“We’re still talking to the victim. It’s quite a possibility that it is a kidnapping and that’s certainly one of the charges we’ll be seeking if it turns out to be that,” Duffin said.
“But, he’s traumatised by the incident and it’s very tough to communicate with him at this point.”
Duffin said the victim was with his tormentors for at least 24 hours and as long as 48 hours.
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson called the video “sickening.”
“It makes you wonder what would make individuals treat somebody like that,” he said.