2017 Chicago Kidnapping Livestream

2017 Chicago Kidnapping Livestream

Updated Jun 20, 2019 at 03:27PM EDT by Kevinvq2.

Added Jan 05, 2017 at 02:54AM EST by Synge.

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The 2017 Chicago Kidnapping Livestream refers to the abduction and torture of a mentally challenged man by four assailants in Chicago, Illinois, which was livestreamed on Facebook in early January 2017. In the video footage, the victim is repeatedly abused both verbally and physically and forced to perform demeaning acts. Due to several racially charged insults uttered by the assailants in the video, many argued in favor of classifying the act as a hate crime.


On January 3rd, 2017, Facebook user Brittany Herring livestreamed herself and three other individuals beating a white mentally disabled man while yelling "fuck white people" and "fuck Donald Trump." In the video footage, the assailants repeatedly verbally and physically abuse the victim, cut his scalp, and force him to drink water out of a toilet. Following the incident, Chicago police found the victim distraught and traumatized before transporting him to a local hospital for treatment. The following day, police became aware of the video and arrested the assailants.


Online Reaction

The day following the incident, users on Twitter created the hashtag #BLMKidnapping,[2] with some accusing the attackers of being Black Lives Matter activists, despite there being no mention of the organization in the video. On Reddit, posts about the incident reached the frontpage of the /r/news,[5] /r/publicfreakout[6] and /r/The_Donald[4] subreddits. Additionally, Redditor fuck-off-nazi-punks submitted a post asking about the "#BLMKidnapping" hashtag to /r/OutOfTheLoop.[10] Meanwhile, several threads about the kidnapping were posted on 4chan's /pol/ board, where users circulated the address and other pieces of personally identifiable information belonging to the assailants.[7][8][9]

News Media Coverage

On January 4th, BuzzFeed[3] published an article about the incident, reporting that Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson stated "there was no indication it was motivated by politics or race." On January 5th, the NY Daily News published an article written by Shaun King titled "Stop using the attack on a mentally challenged white man in Chicago to promote a racist agenda against Black Lives Matter."

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