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Former NYPD: The Chicago Attack Was Not A 'Hate Crime.' It Was Domestic Terrorism.


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 IJR Opinion is an opinion platform and any opinions or information put forth by contributors are exclusive to them and do not represent the views of IJR.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines terror as a “state of intense fear.” No term, then, is more fitting to describe the state of the young, white, mentally disabled man who was sadistically tortured by four black suspects in Chicago while they streamed the savagery on a live Facebook broadcast.

What disturbed me most about this attack was not that the suspects clearly derived pleasure from their victim’s pain and state of terror, nor was it the depravity of sharing footage of the brutality on social media in the hopes it would go viral.

Most disturbing to me was how Chicago’s top cop, Eddie Johnson, downplayed the savagery and severity of this domestic terror attack by initially saying,  “I think some of it’s just stupidity.”

“You know, people just ranting about something they think might make a headline,” he said in response to the deliberate torture of a mentally disabled man.

“At this point, we don’t have anything concrete to point us in that direction [of a hate crime], but we will keep investigating.”

Now, I don’t know much about Superintendent Johnson’s training, experience, or IQ, but in my law enforcement experience, when there’s a video of suspects torturing a victim while saying, “F**k whites!” and “F**k Trump!” we call that a clue.

Unfortunately for the victim, this took place in the Orwellian universe of Chicago, where up is down and down is up and where black murderers are given a pass simply because Mayor Rahm Emanuel refuses to contradict the Left’s politically correct narrative and acknowledge his city’s crime epidemic among young blacks.

The FBI, in its most recent Uniform Crime Reporting (2015 UCR), found that young black men are ten times more likely to commit murder, and nine times more likely to commit violent crimes than white men in the same age groups. Cross-referencing FBI data with U.S. Census tract data in Chicago’s highest crime areas, those ratios rise to 20 to 25 times higher.

Despite those irrefutable facts, the Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department, our nation’s second largest after NYPD, initially seemed incapable of watching the same video that we all did and finding a motive or an appropriate charge.

In reality, Supt. Johnson played far-left racial politics, giving a pass to black suspects at the expense of a white victim.

You can bet your last dollar had the victim been black, and the suspects whites yelling, “F**k blacks” and “F**k Obama!” 200 FBI agents and 20 DOJ prosecutors would have been wheels up to Chicago three minutes after the video hit social media.

A small dose of sanity finally prevailed when the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office charged the suspects — identified by police as Jordan Hill, Tesfaye Cooper, Brittany Covington (all 18) and Tanishia Covington, 24 — with not only ‘hate crimes,’ but aggravated kidnapping, aggravated unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

But I see this as an unfortunate situation because Cook County is one of the busiest court systems in the nation, and out of sheer necessity pleas down roughly 75 percent of cases. In short, there is a very strong chance that the suspects will see their charges reduced, do little to no jail time, and the final adjudication will be nothing more than token sentencing, after which the criminals will be more emboldened, laughing at the velvet glove treatment they received.

America, especially Chicago, cannot afford another of these pyrrhic criminal justice system victories.

This case presented Chicago politicians with a real opportunity to send a statement to their city’s violent elements that they are as fed up as the rest of the nation and that barbarism will no longer be tolerated.

They can still send that message by charging the perps with domestic terrorism.

The FBI states that domestic terrorism must:

  1. Involve acts dangerous to human life that violate federal or state law
  2. Appear intended to (i) intimidate or coerce a civilian population, (ii) to influence policy of a government by intimidation or coercion, or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping, and
  3. Occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the U.S.

What I watched on that video, through the lens of my law enforcement training and experience, satisfied all three criteria.

Full disclosure, I have never been a fan of hate crime legislation. No person’s life should be worth more than that of another because of his or her disability, gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation.

But that is irrelevant because this wasn’t a hate crime. It was domestic terrorism.

As a former south Bronx street cop, I can tell you that video broadcast cruelty, savagery, and violence that ranks up there with the most heinous I’ve seen to date.

But not every violent crime is equal. Passion, profit, or some type of psychosis catalyze most criminal acts. Domestic violence, assaults, armed robberies, and rapes are typically rooted in one of the categories above. This crime, however, was not.

In this case, the motive was to make political and social statements through the use of violence and torture. The motivation was to control through intimidation.

The young man was tortured simply because he was a white American presumed by the perpetrators to have supported President-elect Donald Trump.

And according to the FBI, that is domestic terrorism.

Charge it, prosecute for it, and let’s send a loud and clear message that this type of savagery will no longer be tolerated.

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