Hate Crimes Dropped Against Black Lives Matter Kidnappers-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
Rumors spread on social media that hate crimes against four Black Lives Matter (BLM) members accused of kidnapping were dropped.
Hate crime charges were not dropped against four African-American people who live streamed their torture of a mentally disabled white man. And, contrary to claims otherwise, there’s no indication that the four people are members of Black Lives Matter (BLM).
The torture was streamed on Facebook Live in January 2017. The victim, who was a classmate of two of the perpetrators, was bound, cut with a knife and forced to drink water from a toilet. He was also forced to make comments like “F— Trump” and “F— white people.”
Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson initially said that the case was unlikely to be pursued as a hate crime. However, prosecutors changed course. Jordan Hill, 18, Tesfaye Cooper, 18, Brittany Covington, 18 and Tanishia Covington were charged with aggravated kidnapping, hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. They pleaded not guilty.
False Claim: Hate Crimes Dropped Against Black Lives Matter Kidnappers
Claims that a Chicago judge dropped the hate crime against the Black Lives Matter kidnappers came from a single tweet that does not cite any sources. The tweet appeared at the handle @Thirsty_Grunt and was quickly shared nearly 11,000 times.
Representatives from the Cook County State’s Attorneys Office have denied those claims. Hearings are scheduled for all four of the defendants, who remain held on $900,000, $800,000, $500,000 and $200,000 cash bail.
And it’s not clear where the claim that the four defendants are members of Black Lives matter came from. The racially-charged nature of the video likely led people to make that leap. However, there’s no indication by police or in press reports that the four are actually members of BLM.