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Facebook Live Suspects Plea: Not Guilty of Hate Crime Attack on Teen

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Spokesman David Boyd and others hold a news conference Thursday, Jan. 5, 2017, in Crystal Lake, Ill., after an 18-year-old man was assaulted on Facebook Live in Chicago earlier in the week. Four people who were charged with hate crimes have pleaded not guilty. (Patrick Kunzer/Daily Herald via AP)

By    |   Friday, 10 Feb 2017 04:12 PM

Following a January beating streamed live on Facebook, four suspects entered a plea of not guilty in Chicago Friday on hate crime charges stemming from the New Year’s Eve attack on a disabled teen.

The four suspects’ pleas were entered by assistant district attorneys. They have been held without bond since their arrest following the Facebook Live video, in which they appear to kick the teen, cut his hair and scalp, and force him to drink toilet water while yelling slurs at him, according to The Chicago Sun Times.

The suspects, who are black, also made the teen, who is white, say, “I love black people,” and suspect Jordan Hill allegedly called the victim’s mother and demanded $300.

Slurs against President Donald Trump and “white people” also were heard on the video, the Sun Times reported.

The suspects allegedly met the victim, a classmate of Hill, at a local McDonald’s on Dec. 31 and drove him to a West Side apartment where they assaulted him.

The video prompted general outrage when it went viral in January, and even then-President Barack Obama talked about it.

A Cook County public defender said the defendants have received death threats, according to ABC 7 Chicago

Hill, Tesfaye Cooper, Brittany Covington, and sister Tanishia Covington are each charged with a hate crime, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated unlawful restraint, and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. Cooper, Hill, and Brittany Covington are 18 and Tanishia is 24.

A status hearing will be held March 1, until which time the suspects will still be in custody without bail, ABC reported.

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Following a January beating streamed live on Facebook, four suspects entered a plea of not guilty in Chicago Friday on hate crime charges stemming from the New Year’s Eve attack on a disabled teen.
facebook, live, suspects, plea, not guilty
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2017-12-10
Friday, 10 Feb 2017 04:12 PM
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