Teens Claim Racist Slurs Ignited Park Skirmish, Cops Say

Two older teens arrested and two others sent to hospital after altercation between black and white youths in Wolfe Wildlife Refuge, police said.

At least 12 teens – ranging in age from 14 through 19 – were involved in various altercations at a village park on Aug. 14.

Skirmishes apparently took place between two groups of white and black male juveniles, resulting in the arrests of two older teens.

Stephen Hyde, 18, of the 10700 block of South Lawler Avenue in Oak Lawn; and Hexdore Randall, 19, of the 5400 block of North Western Avenue in Chicago, were both charged as adults on two counts each of misdemeanor battery.

Hyde and Randall, and their friends, who are black, claim that a fight broke out after the white teens hurled racial slurs at them.

In a police report that was released to the news media on Friday, Oak Lawn Police responded to a disturbance call at Wolfe Wildlife Refuge at 107th Street and Laramie Avenue around 9:22 p.m. last Wednesday.

Some information in the report was redacted because most of those involved, except for the two older teens that were charged as adults, were underage. The Oak Lawn Police Department does not release the names of juvenile under age 17.

Here is a summary of what happened:

Dispatch advised police of two separate callers, both stating they had been jumped in the area near Wolf Wildlife. One of the callers advised that he was punched in the face by five males blacks, reports said.

Police also received another call concerning a third teen stating that he had been jumped at Wolfe Wildlife.

When officers arrived on the scene, they met with four teens that had visible injuries, reports said. Oak Lawn paramedics were summoned to Wolfe Wildlife to provide medical treatment.

According to the report, three of the teens were walking along the trails by the bridge at Wolf Wildlife, when they encountered five black teens.

The three boys, who are white, told police that the black teens “fanned out,” forcing them to walk single file on the trail.

A 15-year-old Chicago boy told police that one of the black teens said something to his friend before he was struck in the back of the head and once in the face, reports said.

These facts were confirmed by the 15-year-old's friend, who added that  he was charged from behind and shoved in the back, police said. The second youth also alleged that he struck several times by a black teen.

While police officers were speaking to the injured youths, they noticed five teens that matched the descriptions of their alleged assailants, walking from the bridge along the wooded trails.

A police officer, who was by himself, stopped and handcuffed the five teens, one who was identified as Randall.

Police found the other teen that was charged, Hyde, reportedly hiding on the trail, reports said.

Hyde allegedly told police that he was walking home with his friends and brother, “when a bunch of white kids” started fighting with him. He claimed to have been struck in the face several times by an unknown white youth, police said.

Two other teens that were being detained said they met up with their friends and Hyde who said they had gotten jumped by some “white kids” and were looking for them. Police said both youths insisted they had not been involved in the alleged fight, but had arrived after it had ended.

Another of the five stated that he, Hyde and Hexadore were met by a group of “white boys” near the trails and that one of them shouted some racial slurs. His friend then “pushed one of the white kids,” causing a fight to break out, reports said.

Police said the black youth could not identify which of his friends had pushed the white teen. Instead he ran away when the fight began.

Randall reportedly told police that he was “walking with my godbrother,” through the Wolfe Wildlife trails when they encountered “five to six white boys” who exchanged words with the group.

One of his friends, Randall allegedly told police, “pushed one of the white kids” and a big fight broke out. Police said that Randall admitted to punching three white youths in self-defense.

Police spoke to Hyde, who stated that a white youth accused him of touching a girl with his penis, reports said. He then changed his story to say that the remark had been made the previous day, police said.

Hyde further stated that a group of white kids were yelling racial slurs at him and his friends. One of his friends, Hyde said, pushed a white teen and a fight ensured, according to police.

Police said that Hyde also admitted to punching one or two of the white youths, before hiding behind a bush, where the officer eventually found him.

Another alleged victim, a 14-year-old boy, arrived on the scene, who was soaking wet and muddy up to his waist, reports said.

The 14-year-old said he had been walking along on the trail from the bridge, where was approached by a black teen that was running toward him.

According to the 14-year-old, the black teen punched him, causing him to fall backwards into the creek, police said. During the alleged encounter, his iPhone fell from his pocket.

Police said the 14-year-old was able to positively identify both Hyde and Hexadore; no other identifications were made.

Based on the identifications and alleged statements made by Hyde and Hexadore, bother were placed in custody and taken to the Oak Lawn police station.

The other youths being detained were taken out of handcuffs and released without being charged.

Two youths were taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center where they received medical treatment.

There, a black teen who was being treated for injuries told police he was jumped by a group of white youths who yelled racial slurs.

A detective found the 14-year-old’s cell phone on the trail at Wolf Wildlife.

Both teens are to appear in court on Sept. 27.

Jim P August 21, 2013 at 08:06 AM
It's no surprise there are problems after reading through all the racist comments here. If this is what you are teaching your children at home, it's no wonder people can't get along.
m.m. August 21, 2013 at 08:37 AM
Yes, there will always be fighting between teens no matter the race as well as these parks being used for loitering and underage drinking at night. These problems occur at parks everywhere..not just here. This particular skirmish was race related. Because of that, the odds of this becoming an even bigger problem are high. I think people are just saying that security needs to be reevaluated in the area and stepped up before things get out of control. I don't think everyone here should be labeled as racists though just because they are upset over what happened in their neighborhood. I thing the safety of their children is what is most important.
J August 21, 2013 at 09:41 AM
"Additionally, I'm not so convinced that violent crime is up significantly in the area. I think social media and sites like this have simply made people more aware of things thy have always been going on in the area." EW - I beg to differ. I've lived in the area about 30 years & have always made myself aware of what's going on. Sure seems crime is up. Would like to see some stats from the law enforcement community. I think they would back that crime is up (or at least calls about crimes as formal charges may not be placed)
RobertS August 21, 2013 at 10:43 AM
Jim P: Everyone is a little racist—everyone! Blacks, whites, Asians, Indian, etc., all stereotype and have prejudices to some degree, if you think otherwise, you may want to have your vision checked. Humans are still animals and they still need some sort of pecking order, and it continues into our everyday existence. At least that is my opinion...
Jose Madrigal August 22, 2013 at 02:11 AM
Cops too busy checking for expired license plates in store parking lots.
Aaron August 22, 2013 at 04:01 AM
"Can someone answer a question I've been thinking about for a while? Why is it that villages don't send tax bills to renters and condo owners. They benefit from village services, especially schools so, I don't understand why they don't get a "use of property in the Village" tax bill when we all get our property tax bill." Renters pay property tax via their rents! Building owners don't eat tax bills.
Aaron August 22, 2013 at 04:05 AM
"The rampant racism throughout so many comments all over Patch only reaffirms the need for such laws." If it wasn't for racism Oak Lawn would be a hamlet.
Aaron August 22, 2013 at 04:06 AM
"the story didn't mention those details" Yes it did. Try reading it next time.
Johnny Damon August 22, 2013 at 09:25 AM
As usual the Oak Lawn cops open their mouths and the media thrives on it. NO STATEMENTS should be given until all parties have been interviewed and then if there are appropriate charges to be made to either side in the dispute, make then and move on. By properly hankdling the situation and trying to keep tensions low. The police and media are suceeding in escalating the situation, anything to get a story out there right!!!
p August 23, 2013 at 12:15 AM
Everyone listen up. Let's get a few facts straight. The arrested people ganged up/armed up against much younger children that were always fewer in number. This happened many times that day and as I hear many times in the past. What is the difference in size and weight between a 14 year old and an 18 year old? The minute there was more than one much younger teen trying to help out victims...they ran away. Big strong men right!? All of the victims' stories were corroborated (over and over...five interviews for each victim?) Listen up Patch, Do you think that the original article(brilliantly written...sarcasm here) was either a huge case of misinformation or out right lying? You and the hugely intelligent "journalist" should be held accountable because those were minors that you lied about. The original article says skirmish but the next article notes a melee ( I bet they needed a thesaurus for that one). In every "skirmish" that occurred there was a gang of perpetrators surrounding a small number of victims. You are very definitely doing a disservice to everyone involved as well as your community and communities at large by reporting racial slurs in the first article(there is no proof...no corroboration...)and then ending this article with the comment that the next article will have the perpetrators stories(as I hear the stories have changed several times). If anyone should have any problems stemming from this negligent "reporting" they shall have you to blame and there are legal ways to solve it. I hope for the sake of those living in Oak Lawn that police wake up and do their job. Think Christopher Lane and Shorty(If you don't know please look these stories up).
p August 23, 2013 at 12:23 AM
yep this thread is as patrolled as....drum roll please wolfe wildlife.
p August 23, 2013 at 12:54 AM
Last comment because well I LITERALLY can not help myself. Not once did I feel a need to mention race in my posts (note to above journalist extraordinaire). So that people may see everything in black and white(meaning facts).
JC August 23, 2013 at 07:55 PM
Robert S: Your comments are all over the board. Are there 2 of you? One of Oak Lawn's attributes is the diversity. The real racists live in wealthy enclaves who claim they care but live as far as possible from minorities. Oak Lawn has a wide range of socio-economics. I am an attorney. I live in Oak Lawn for the diversity. The housing stock is diverse. If you feel the need to flee, where are you going? The country will be "minority" to "majority" populated by mid-century. The key is education and income increasing opportunities. Advocate Christ is a key. Oak Lawn could become a regional medical center for the area. Retail is dying. 95th Street is changing for the better. Retail will be internet driven soon. If you think you an run to Orland or Will County, good luck. Address issues and stop the negativity.
RobertS August 23, 2013 at 08:36 PM
JC: I don't know how you can say my comments are all over the board. I lived in OL for 49 years, I truly cared about the community but I left due to the increasing crime factors and moved out of state. I am not being negative, I am being realistic, the facts are presenting themselves time and time again. Yes, you're right, OL does have a wide range of socio-economics, but that is changing, take a look at the changing demographics, there is an increase in lower income families. OL would be fine if it attracted middle to upper class of all races, but the truth is it is not doing that, section 8 is not middle class. Are you accusing me of the only one being negative on this thread?? Ummmmmm—take a good read! The only difference is that some of us have already left. Advocate Christ is a significant economic force in OL but I honestly believe you do need some retail or diversity in business. Okay, the issues—crime rates are rising in OL, their are businesses leaving (yeah, I will cut some slack here and say some is due to online shopping), the taxes in OL are ridiculous considering the lack of services (although Dist. 123 is an excellent school district), the demographics of OL are changing fast, and the former local government was laughable. This is all in a town that I will always consider my home and love, but I have chosen no longer to reside there. I am truly sorry if you think I am being so negative, but I am facing the brutal reality of a community that I love.
RobertS August 23, 2013 at 08:41 PM
JC: Regarding diversity, yeah, again it does work, but it has to be realistic. Many of the incoming people are not assimilating, they are changing the game and forcing their beliefs on those that already reside in the community. You simply cannot take someone from an extremely low socio-economic level and expect them to thrive or flourish in a middle class community, I am middle class to upper middle and I know that I would never fit in a community like Kenilworth or Winnetka, but I am realistic.
fred August 23, 2013 at 10:52 PM
I know of two groups who get free money, work is thus not seen as a necessity to put food on the table and pay bills. The wealthy and the poor. The latter tends to fill the applications of that disgraceful section 8 program. Which of these two has taken residence in every SW burb of Cook County following the demise of the projects on S State St. And brought along the gangster ways? Brass knuckles, baseball bats, knives are all deadly. If knuckles were used, some charges need to be lodged.
STM August 24, 2013 at 07:10 AM
Let me guess......the latter.
south sider j August 24, 2013 at 04:19 PM
To be NON-racist is to admit these black people attacked these people as usual. no need to bring race in this even though it plays a large factor and everyone knows it. These white kids were attacked, end of story like every where else in the country this is happening. They were lucky they were in a group or this might have been a homicide article! Keep your kids safe people and expect this sh** more and more.
Courtney S.Pace August 24, 2013 at 05:44 PM
If the article indicated a group of people attacked a person and if the news never said anything of race it would lower hate crimes. All the media seems to do is give all that is bad attention which is what all that is bad wants...attention and bragging rights. David Walters is absolutely right.
JC August 24, 2013 at 07:24 PM
Robert S: My one and only reply to you. People ran from Marquette Park and South Shore. Now look at these forsaken neighborhoods. The costs for these areas are paid by everyone in this State. There is no where to run. Oak Lawn is facing current problems before some other areas because of geography (proximity to Chicago and the complexity of the problems there). You must face issues where you live. Also, wake up, man. You can live anywhere you want including your sacred Winnetka. But could it be there are racial and economic institutional barriers there preventing diversity (few apartments, grossly inflated real estate prices for many but not all fairly standard homes, jobs mainly N and W in the metro area, etc.). These are troubled times in a troubled State. Could it be the real dividers are the political and social elites not the alleged differences between the different races (black or white or brown)?
fred August 24, 2013 at 07:32 PM
If the N word is not pitched periodically, and combatively, towards blacks at the local high schools, I doubt it was pitched as the black who claimed it was the case. Also, no JJ on the scene by now. Is that not a dead giveaway? Race card brought out to save the black kids from charges. That's my guess.
RobertS August 24, 2013 at 11:07 PM
JC: My last response to you... You mention many good points, and I acknowledge those. Yes, OL has issues that are due in part to its proximity to Chicago and other issues, but it doesn't seem to be addressing those issues because it is too mucked up with other issues that make it look viable, such as the property on 110th and Cicero. We could go back and forth but there is no point in it. We have many of the same points but we just view and address them differently. Thanks for your input, it was interesting.
Maureen Reilly August 25, 2013 at 08:17 AM
I live in Evergreen Park and I agree things have changed for the worse since there have been an increase in section 8 housing. You get everything handed to you I.e. link card, Medicaid , cell phones , money to live on, So why work and your hobby becomes causing trouble. I see it every day. Cars have been broken into , including mine, homes broken into, store thefts.
Harry Callahan August 25, 2013 at 08:58 AM
Attention Oak lawn residents, this is just the beginning of whats to come,these are the incidents that happen on the SW side of Chicago back in the days ,and now its a battle zone thanks to a certain group of people and another that has no bees to fight back.
Susan August 25, 2013 at 12:24 PM
I don't know what happened - obviously, I wasn't there. However, all that black kids need to say is that the "n" word was used, whether it was or wasn't, and it's a game changer. They know to always say they were called that name whenever there is trouble. Problem with that is, just being called a name, does not give anyone the right to surround and attack anyone. If that much trouble has been going on at Wolfe Wildlife - there should be police patrolling that area all day long.
Dan September 12, 2013 at 08:06 AM
this is the fault of the STUPID white kids,who think it's cool to hang around with pavement beast. they will steel and rob you stupid white kids. blacks should not even be around that area. I suggest these white kids stop with the wanting to be black,and be proud to be white,and carry a bat......
C m September 12, 2013 at 11:55 PM
This is why they want to remove the basketball nets. Good idea. Get rid of the riff raff that doesn't belong in this neighborhood.
Bob Petumkin September 13, 2013 at 10:05 AM
Dear Oak Lawn, To those of you realists in the crowd I wish you good luck. You need to get yourself in good physical shape, get legally armed and stay frosty because you are now liable to face combat at any moment. If you can, you should move because your neighborhood has clearly hit critical mass. To those of you with your head in the sand I wish you godspeed. Your naivety makes you easy prey and if/when you suffer from a diversity attack, I hope that your luck allows for your survival. Just know that there is no shame in shucking off the liberal brainwashing and joining our ranks. Most of us thought like you once and we are out here waiting for you to cross over.
Dan September 13, 2013 at 11:30 AM
can't wait to carry my .45. at least i'll have piece of mind.
south sider j September 24, 2013 at 02:07 AM
unfortunately @Dan the lessons learned in the past building up to an unsettling amount haven't been communicated in the correct ways. It's part of the "agenda" and there are just too many blind people that believe the world is supposed to be nice and perfect, and if they ignore the truths that consume them it just goes away! It takes DETROIT before anyone of these "it's not my problem" people lift a brow at the situation at hand that is poised to implode the communities throughout the country from the inside out. That's real info there!


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »