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Four Suspects Charged with Beating Disabled Boy Held without Bail
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Summary: The four young suspects in Chicago charged with kidnapping and beating a disabled teenager for several days will be held without bail.

The four young adults accused of torturing a special-needs boy from Chicago are being held without bail. The decision by the judge was welcomed with cheers in the courtroom. They face kidnapping, hate crime, battery, and unlawful restraint charges for attacking the boy and broadcasting it on Facebook Live.


Cook County Judge Maria Kuriakos Ciesil declared, “I’m wondering where was the sense of decency that each of you should have had? When the mom reached out asking about her child … Where was it? I don’t see it.”

Assistant State’s Attorney Erin Antonetti told reporters after the hearing that the victim suffers from attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and schizophrenia. The 18-year-old victim was friends with one of the suspects, Jordan Hill, and was voluntarily spending time with him on New Year’s Eve.

The victim’s mother called Hill to check on her son’s location, which made Hill angry. The attacks on the boy then began in the back of a stolen van. Hill then took the boy to a third-floor apartment in Chicago where he was bound and gagged. The two female suspects and another male suspect joined in to beat the victim for several days. They forced him to drink toilet water and broadcasted some of the attacks on Facebook Live. Hill reached out to the victim’s mother during the time of the attacks, demanding $300 in exchange for her son.

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The victim escaped when the suspects were arguing with the second-floor residents about the noise level. The victim slipped out and ran on to street where police found him wearing an inside-out tank top, shorts, and sandals on a cold January day. Office Michael Donnelly said, “He was bloodied, he was battered. He was very discombobulated.”

Jordan Hill, 18; Tesfaye Cooper, 18; Tanishia Covington, 24; and Brittany Covington, 18, are facing the same charges of hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint, felony aggravated kidnapping, and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. Hill faces the additional charge of possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Hill, Cooper, and Brittany Covington face residential burglary charges.

The public defenders for the suspects tried to argue that they are good people. Tanishia Covington has two children. Brittany Covington is a cashier and attends church. Cooper lives with his mother and six siblings, one of which is paralyzed. Cooper has been arrested before for possession of a controlled substance, the defenders pointed out. Hill lives with his grandmother and six siblings. He played football in high school. The defender also noted that Hill has already spent time in jail for prior convictions.

The graphic video shows the victim cowering in the corner, tied up with his mouth bound in plastic. One suspect slashes his shirt with a knife. A female suspect streams the attacks, repeatedly turns the camera back to herself. A suspect uses a knife to carve a piece of the victim’s scalp off. The video lasts for 25 minutes with the victim being kicked and punched despite the victim’s screams.

A hate crime was pursued because of the victim’s mental capacity and the fact that he is white. The four suspects are African-American.

The victim’s parents dropped him off at a McDonalds to meet up with a friend on New Year’s Eve. He called home to ask to stay the night with the friend. He called again on January 1st to ask the same thing. By January 2nd, he was no longer communicating with home. The victim’s brother got on Facebook to find out who the victim was with, determining the victim was with Hill.

What kind of sentence do you think the four suspects should get? Tell us in the comments below.

To learn more about other Chicago stories, read these articles:




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