A black hospital patient has been arrested after he was accused by a white security guard of attempting to steal his hospital IV drip to sell on eBay after he went for a walk around the hospital grounds.
Videos of Shaquille Dukes being arrested have since gone viral after being posted on Facebook, where they have been viewed and shared by thousands.
In a post accompanying the videos, the 24-year-old wrote that he was being treated in the FHN Memorial Hospital in Freeport, Illinois, for double pneumonia, and that he had permission from the medical staff to walk around outside as long as he did not leave the hospital grounds.
Taking to Facebook, he wrote:
This is truly one of the most racist cities in America. I was admitted into the hospital for double pneumonia, after receiving doctors orders to walk around, I was stopped by an overzealous, racist, security officer, who claimed that I 'was trying to leave the hospital to sell the IV equipment on eBay'.
After a brief conversation, the guard called the police, I was advised by Sgt. Jeff Zalaznik, badge number 116, that I was being arrested for attempted theft, of the IV equipment that was clearly attached to my arm. My brother was arrested, and then me. Under the direction of Sgt Zalaznik, officers stood by and watched while my IV was removed on the sidewalk, and it was NOT by a doctor.
Dukes also claims that officers took his rescue inhaler off of him:
While in transit I began to have a seizure, and subsequently an asthma attack. I pleaded with officers for almost four minutes to retrieve my inhaler from the transporting officer, and finally, when I became unresponsive, it miraculously appeared.
Dukes ended up being charged with disorderly conduct, not attempted theft, Freeport police lieutenant Andrew Schroeder told the Journal-Standard.
Speaking to the publication, Schroeder said:
The issue here is that his actions were why he was arrested.
Had they been able to engage in a civil discourse with hospital security, we wouldn’t have been called at all.
In his Facebook post, Dukes also said:
I make this post not for pity, but as a beacon of hope for all black and brown minorities dealing with the City of Freeport, we do not have to take this s**t any longer! I've shared contact info for a great attorney who is ready and willing to intervene.
This ends today, anyone who sees this, and has been served an injustice or was a victim of a crime initiated by Freeport PD, please reach out.
Dukes also filed a formal complaint against the city. Speaking to the Journal-Standard, he said:
I’m not just going to sit here and be complacent about what I know is an illegality.