A man shown in a viral video getting punched and kicked as a crowd yells, “Don’t vote Trump” acknowledges he supports Donald Trump but said Thursday that’s not what started the beating on the West Side the day after the presidential election.
David Wilcox, 49, said he was about to turn left from Kedzie Avenue to Roosevelt Road around 1 p.m. Wednesday when a black sedan pulled up and scraped the right side of his Pontiac Bonneville.
“I stopped and parked. And I asked if they had insurance, and the next thing that I knew they were beating the s— out of me,” Wilcox said Thursday.
A phone video shot from a bus stop at the intersection shows Wilcox being knocked to the pavement as five people gather around him. A man in the group straddles his back and punches Wilcox with both hands.
As the fight picks up, people on the sidewalk away from the struggle yell taunts that include “You voted Trump,” “Beat his ass” and “Don’t vote Trump.”
There’s laughter as Wilcox rolls on his back and covers his face. Two people hit and kick him. Wilcox gets up and tries to get back in his car, but someone repeatedly punches him until he slumps by the side of the vehicle.
Someone else then gets into the driver’s seat of the Bonneville, and Wilcox tries to get him out. People shove him away, but Wilcox grabs onto a door frame and is dragged along as the Bonneville pulls away.
“They were beating me to have me let go of the car,” Wilcox said. “The guy went to 70 and 80 mph. If I let go, I was dead. He slowed to 45. … He tried to push the door open. …So he stepped on it again.
“He stepped up back to 70 and 80, swerved again,” Wilcox said. “The wheels on my side left the ground, up to 2 inches. … Then he slowed down. I was looking at oncoming traffic. He probably slowed to about 45. God was watching over for me. I rolled about five or seven times into the oncoming traffic lanes.
“There was a parole officer with a gun and bulletproof vest,” he added. “He turned left, and he told me just sit down and wait for the police to come.”
Wilcox filled out a police report, but no one was reported in custody Thursday afternoon. Police said they were investigating the beating and who made the “politically divisive” statements in the video.
“Regardless of who said those statements, the department is taking this very seriously, and that type of divisive rhetoric is not acceptable,” said Anthony Guglielmi, chief police spokesman.
Wilcox said he did vote for Trump on Tuesday, but no one in the crowd would have known that. He said the taunts appeared to come from people watching the beating, including one person at the bus stop who he heard say, “Yeah, it’s one of them white boy Trump guys.”
Wilcox believes the attackers, who were black, were egged on by the bystanders. “They intensified it, aggravated it and made it more than it was.”
Wilcox said he voted for Trump because “he’s gonna bring back the economy. I believe he’s gonna be the one to protect the (nation). I know he doesn’t speak politically correct sometimes, but 95 percent of the country doesn’t.”
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