A GoFundMe campaign launched to assist the young man attacked earlier this week in Chicago has raised more than $50,000 in just a day. The campaign has already exceeded both its previous goals of $5,000 and $10,000.
“Razor” Sheldon of San Francisco, California, started the online fundraiser Thursday in response to news that an 18-year-old, whom police described as having “mental health challenges,” was bound, gagged and tortured for up to 48 hours in Chicago.
“Let’s prove to him that there is far more good in this world than the evil he recently endured,” Sheldon wrote on the subreddit r/UpliftingNews, which he founded in May 2012.
A GoFundMe representative authenticated the campaign in an email to The Huffington Post, and says the funds will go directly to the victim’s family.
In a half-hour video broadcast on Facebook Live, the attackers were seen beating the bound and gagged young man, dumping ashes on him, and slashing at the young man’s clothes with a knife. The attackers can be heard saying “fuck white people” and President-elect Donald Trump, although police have said the attack does not seem to have been politically motivated.
The video was later removed by Facebook.
Police said at a press conference that the victim managed to escape and was discovered Tuesday by police wandering the street disoriented and confused. Authorities said the young man was so traumatized by the experience that it took him most of the night to calm down and tell his story.
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office charged four suspects ― Jordan Hill, 18, Tesfaye Cooper, 18, and sisters Brittany Covington, 18, and Tanishia Covington, 24, all of whom are black ― with a hate crime, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.
Police also noted that Hill and the victim are acquainted, having attended the same school.
Chicago Area North Detectives Commander Kevin Duffin said hate crime charges are warranted due to the victim’s “diminished mental capacity, the fact that they tied him up, the obvious racial quotes that they post live on Facebook.”