CHICAGO (CBS) — The family of the Facebook torture victim met with reporters briefly on Thursday.
They said they are grateful the 18-year-old Crystal Lake teen is back home, alive. During a crime that lasted hours, he was beaten, taunted and tortured in a video that was streamed live on Facebook. The family watched the video in disbelief.READ MORE: Jussie Smollett Takes The Witness Stand, Describes Alleged Attack As Real And Like 'Something Out Of Looney Tunes Adventures'
“At this time, we ask for continued prayers, for all those involved, for our family’s privacy as we cope and heal,” David Boyd, the victim’s brother-in-law, said during a news conference in the northwest suburb. “We’re trying to stick together as a family.”
He said the family has been taken aback by the attention the case has generated. “”We’re overwhelmed and surprised. We’re happy that everyone is concerned. This should never have happened,” Boyd said.READ MORE: Department Of Justice Closes Emmett Till Investigation Without New Charges
Family members weren’t sure if they would attend a bond court hearing for the four people charged with kidnapping and a hate crime.
“We’re fully aware of the charges being brought against the offenders,” said Boyd.
They said the victim is doing as well as can be expected under the circumstances, but that’s he’s been so distraught he’s unable to sleep.
“If they’re convicted of the serious charges in this particular case, they’re going to spend a long time in a penitentiary. They’re not looking at years, they may be looking at decades,” said CBS 2 Legal Analyst Irv Miller. “When you hurt someone with a disability, that aggravates the offense, aggravates the potential sentences.”MORE NEWS: Chicago Weather: Coldest Temperatures In Nearly 10 Months Early Tuesday