The Chicago Tribune reports that the fourth defendant in the case involving the beating of a disabled teen on Facebook live has pleaded guilty to hate crime charges. The teen was beaten while a video of it was streamed on Facebook, and he suffered from mental disabilities.
Tesfaye Cooper, 20, apologized to the teen’s family in court on Thursday. The attack took place in January 2017, and the victim was friends with one of the assailants. He has schizophrenia and ADHD, and was 18 at the time of the attack.
The victim was white and his four attackers were black, leading to the hate crime charges. Cooper also pleaded guilty to aggravated kidnapping.
Cooper introduced himself to his Facebook audience as “Hothead” in the video. The live videos showed Cooper and another defendant forcing the victim to face a wall and say “I love black people.” He was then taunted with knives and the attackers cut up his shirt, hair and scalp while he was tied and gagged. Other footage showed the defendants forcing the victim’s head into a toilet.
Jordan Hill, described as the ring leader, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to eight years in prison. The other two defendants have also pleaded guilty but still await their sentences.
*Photo credit Chicago Police Department/Chicago Tribune/TNS