Prosecutors detail horrors of torture; 4 denied bond in Facebook Live attack

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CHICAGO -- The four people accused of torturing a mentally disabled man and streaming the attack live on Facebook were denied bond today.

Cook County Judge Maria Kuriakos Ciesel looked at the four defendants in her courtroom today and asked them repeatedly, “Where was the decency?” She denied bond in all of the cases saying they all represented a danger to themselves and society.

18-year-old Jordan Hill of Carpentersville, 18-year-old Tesfaye Cooper, 18-year-old Brittany Covington and 24-year-old Tanishia Covington, all from Chicago, are accused of hate crimes, kidnapping, unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon in torture of an 18-year-old man with schizophrenia and Attention Deficit Disorder.

“On December 31 of 2016, the victim’s mother dropped him off at a McDonalds in Streamwood so he could meet a friend,” Asst. State’s Attorney Erin Antonietti said. “Later in the day on the 31st, the victim contacted his mother and requested to spend the night at a friend’s.”

Prosecutors say that friend was Hill, who had gone to the same alternative high school as the victim.

Once they left McDonalds, the two met with another friend went to buy and smoke pot and Hill allegedly stole a van.

“During that time the victim’s mother was contacting defendant Hill about her son’s whereabouts, defendant Hill returned to the van and was angry that the victim’s mother was contacting him,” Antonietti said.

Hill allegedly beat the victim and took his phone, then took him to a West Side apartment. Hill contacted the victim’s mother and demanded $300 in exchange for her son.

That’s when the group of four began to torture the victim and posted the shocking video clip using Facebook Live.

The victim’s arms were bound and a sock was shoved in his mouth and shut by duct tape. The suspects slapped, cut, taunted, cursed and laughed at the victim.

During the video, two men cut the sleeve of the victim’s shirt. Then a man is seen cutting a patch of hair from the victim’s head with a knife.

Another video shows the victim being forced to drink toilet water.

“The victim was made to say, ‘I love Black people’ and ‘F--- Trump.’” Antonietti said.

The video has been condemned by the president of the United States, the mayor of Chicago and a number of other elected officials and community leaders.

Family members of the accused were in court, but did not speak with reporters afterwards.