When is Enough Enough? The Story of a College Student Attacked by Chicago Police.

This picture shows Justin Cosby being mobbed by police.

What started as a normal day for 20-year-old Justin Cosby soon became one of the worst days of his life. It was May 31st around 8:30 p.m. on the South Side of Chicago. Cosby had attended a Black Lives Matter protest. He wanted to show that in times of tragedy we all just need to stand together.

When Cosby arrived he mentioned how it was a very hostile environment with the police only escalating the situation even more. He saw police officers beating people in the streets for no reason at all. Unknowing to Cosby at the time this was soon to become his reality.

When preparing to come to this protest he knew that it was going to get violent, and mace was going to be administered, so as a precaution Cosby brought with him a water gun to help spray mace and any other make-up out of people’s eyes.

When that time came he did just that by helping a young woman get makeup and mace out of her eyes, but his frustration is what almost cost him his life.

“Then without really thinking I just ran across the line,” Cosby said. “ I sprayed the police with water. I don’t really know what I was thinking. I was just gonna run away and then just, that will be the end of it”.

That was only the beginning, things soon got way worse. The police chased Cosby down for two blocks, and when caught Cosby was compliant with everything that he was being told to do. Although, the police disregarded that, and continued to beat Cosby up while shouting STOP RESISTING! As if those two words give an officer the authority to kill a minority.

Cosby mentions how the officers wouldn’t even put the zip ties on him so that they could have more time to beat him up, and smile at him all while doing it.

“There was one holding me down,” Cosby said. “It was another one that kept on hitting me in the head with a Baton, and one that stepped on my hand and just stayed on it. Then one stepped on my face, and I won’t forget that because he stepped on my face and smiled at me.”

When the officers finally put the zip ties on Cosby’s hands they put it on really loose on purpose so that when carrying him they dropped him right on his face then started hitting him again. All while mocking him forcing him to walk when both his hands and feet were zip tied together. It took another officer to point out the issue that he could not walk with his feet zip tied together.

As a result they carried him again, but instead of the zip ties being too loose this time it was too tight, and cutting off his circulation. Cosby not only received physical abuse from the officers, but received verbal abuse as well.

“They put the zip ties of my hands really really tight,” Cosby said. “To the point where I was lacking blood flow. I couldn’t move my hands, or if I did try to move anywhere, it hurt really, really badly. Until the paramedics had came over, and they said you got to cut this off. I have been yelling that for probably like 30 minutes, and all the cops did was ignore me. They got on their phones and scrolled through Facebook while laughing at me. Then I remember one of the officers while he was walking me to the Paddy wagon asked him if I could get my boot because it came off while they were arresting me, and he said nah dude, fuck you.”

After this horrible experience it didn’t change how Cosby viewed the police, but he learned that during a police interaction you must treat it as if it is a business interaction, and try to get it done as quickly as possible. Another thing he learned is his skills as a stand up comedian helped him to get the most essential thing to survive water while he stayed in custody for over 24 hours.

Cosby compares the issues of policing to insanity. Claiming that we have been doing the same things with policing for the past several years, and the same problem exist. Increasing policing does not decrease crime, but only increases the amount of people getting caught.

“Either way there is not enough police to eradicate all crimes,” Cosby said. “but we should give more money to programs that can reduce the demand to commit crime”.

Cosby wants to make that the reality. He dreams to one day make the Southside of Chicago a better place. By creating policies that will help people, and for the rest of the country to see how effective the policies are and begin to use them in their own cities.

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Ron Simon III

I am a recent graduate of Morehouse College with a degree in Sociology now studying Investigative Journalism at American University in Washington D.C.