An 18-year-old pr0tester was knocking out her front teeth, at a Chicago pr0test calling for the toppling of a Christopher Columbus statue over the weekend. On Friday at least 1,000 people gathered around a statue in Grant Park where hordes of officer clashed with demonstrators deploying pepper spray g people with wooden batons in what witnesses described as a pr0test so far.
Activist Miracle Boyd, 18, had just finished addressing the crowd pr0testing at the statue when she says she got into an argument with an officer. When she started to record their altercation the cop took a swing with his left arm.
‘My tooth was knocked out. I have lip abrasions in my mouth. My teeth hurt really bad,’ she said to ABC7. She added the officer smacked her phone out of her hand.
Several videos of that altercation emerged on social media showing Boyd back away from officers and rushed off covering her mouth. Boyd, a member of the youth group GoodKids MadCity, said the officers took her phone. She had graduated from high school last month, was headed to Depaul University in the fall according to a June post by Chicago Public Schools, and was offered an internship with state senator Robert Peters’ office just last week.
A GoFundMe has been started to raise money for her medical bills. State Sen. Peters slammed the officer towards her tweeting: ‘I’m sad, angry and disgusted.’ ‘She’s someone who suffer every day, who suffer for a safe community. And what did she face? misuse,’ he said. Chicago offcier say they’re opening an investigation into the incident with Boyd.
‘The Chicago cop Department (CPD) strives to treat all individuals our officers with respect. We do not tolerate misconduct of any kind and if any wrongdoing is discovered, officers will be held accountable,’ the department said in a statement to Buzzfeed News. Following the officer roughness with pr0testers Mayor Lori Lightfoot tweeted: ‘I have spoken to the director of the Civilian Office of officer Accountability, and she has assured me that ChicagoCOPA stands ready to address these complaints.’
‘There have also been several reports of excessive force by the officer. These are also unacceptable,’ she added. Overall at least 12 people were in custody and 18 officers were wound at the pr0test. One video from the chaotic clashes shows pr0testers throwing bottles and fireworks at officers standing ground at the statue. One person scaled the statue and caught a rope that was tossed up from the crowd and started an unsuccessful attempt to pull the statue down.
Other videos and photos shows masses of officers running towards pr0testers and pushing them to the ground to clear out the square. ‘This was the bloodiest pr0test I’ve ever been to. People had gushing head wounds and the officer just kept charging in and spraying everyone. To pr0tect a statue of a murderer. The connected & logic of Columbus’ colonialism and modern policing were on full display,’ one pr0tester tweeted on the Friday demonstration.
Columbus statues have been a point of contention across the country amid the Black Lives Matter movement. Lightfoot said last month she opposed the removal of Columbus statues in the city and on Saturday she said her team was planning for a ‘comprehensive review of our public icons’. Pr0testers gathered outside the Mayor’s home on Saturday to pr0test her support for the statue and the offcier roughness that unfolded Friday. ‘That statue has to be taken down. When you have a statue in a public square, you’re saying that is someone who should be celebrated,’ Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa of the 35th District said.
Late Friday a group of city and state officials released a statement condemning reports of officer using pepper spray and other actions against pr0testers and journalists. The document, signed by Ald. Ramirez-Rosa, Rep. Delia Ramirez, state Sen. Robert Peters, and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson, added they’re ready to ‘work to defund the Chicago Polic,e Department immediately.’