Police say Chicago beating streamed on Facebook began as friendly meet-up at fast-food chain

Chicago police talk about livetreamed attack
(Image credit: AP/YouTube)

On Thursday, police charged four suspects in the brutal assault of a mentally disabled 18-year-old with hate crimes as well as aggravated kidnapping and battery with a deadly weapon. The suspects — Brittany Covington, Tesfaye Cooper, and Jordan Hill, all 18, and 24-year-old Tanishia Covington — are black and the victim is white. In a 30-minute video of the beating, broadcast on Facebook Live, the assailants are heard saying "f—k white people" and "f—k Donald Trump."

Police are still trying to piece together exactly what happened, but Detective Cmdr. Kevin Duffin said the encounter began at a suburban McDonald's when Hill and the victim, former schoolmates, left together in what the victim and his parents believed was going to be a sleepover. Instead, Duffin said, Hill took the victim around for a few days in a stolen van and ended up at the Chicago home of two of the suspects, where the 4-5 hour ordeal occurred. The victim told police that the beating began as a friendly, playful fight, and that he was able to escape when his assailants went downstairs to kick in the door of a neighbor who was complaining about the noise.

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.