Defiant local leaders have demanded ‘respect for law enforcement and their lawful orders’ after Oak Lawn officers were filmed this week savagely beating a 17-year-old Arab teenager and beating him hospitalized for brain damage.
The Cook County State’s Attorney has asked the Illinois State Police (ISP) to conduct an independent investigation into the Oak Lawn Police Department after disturbing footage emerged showing two officers brutally beating a teenager, according to local officials.
The teenager has been identified as 17-year-old Hadi Abu Atellah. A representative of his family said the miner suffered fractures to his face, skull and pelvis, as well as brain swelling.
Footage showing officers delivering a dozen punches to the overpowered 115-pound teenager’s face and legs has racked up millions of views since being uploaded on Wednesday.
Police say their level of force was justified because Abu Atellah had a gun on him when he allegedly tried to escape them on foot following a traffic stop stemming from a handful of traffic violations. vehicles.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Abu Atellah’s mother said “she did not know her son owned or carried a gun, and he had never had any trouble with the police.”
She reportedly told CBS News that her son “now has broken bones all over his face, he’s got bruises, he’s in the hospital right now with a neck brace.”
“Why did the police, who weighs over 300 pounds, attack my son who weighs only 115 pounds?” she asked. “Why did they do what they did? It’s not necessary, it’s not necessary and it’s not acceptable.”
But like other local officials, Oak Lawn Police Chief Daniel Vittorio pushed back against pointed criticism of his officers’ violent treatment of the teenager, saying police had handled the situation properly since they “feared for their safety”.