Black Man in Hospital Recovering from Pneumonia Accused of Trying to Steal IV, Gets Arrested

Shaquille Dukes, who is Black, had been in the hospital in Freeport, Ill., for two days with pneumonia when his doctor cleared him to go for a walk outside on June 9, as long as he didn’t leave hospital property.

Then, he was arrested, and some of it was filmed.

White security guards and police officers surrounded him in the video outside of FHN Memorial Hospital. He had the IV in his arm while they accused him of trying to steal it and arrested him.

Dukes was with his brother and another person. As they turned to walk back toward the hospital, a security officer employed by the hospital told them that they had to walk over to his vehicle.

“He had gotten out of his vehicle and said, ‘What are you going to do, steal that and sell it on eBay?’” Dukes told the Journal Standard. “I told him, ‘This machine is pumping fluid into my veins as we speak.’”

The security officer then called police and Dukes said his brother was arrested soon after police arrived and he was arrested a few minutes later. A third man, who recorded the arrests on video, was arrested later.

Ironically, Dukes was arrested for attempted theft for taking the equipment off of hospital property – which he only did to comply with the security officer’s orders to come over to his vehicle.

Once arrested and being transported to jail, the IV was removed from his arm and his rescue inhaler was seized. He then passed out, had a seizure, but wasn’t given his inhaler until four minutes later, according to Dukes.

Dukes said he was racially profiled and has already filed a complaint with the city. Freeport City Manager Lowell Crow said he plans to review Dukes’ videos, as well as police footage, and meet with Dukes on Tuesday.

Dukes is scheduled to appear in court July 11 for a charge of disorderly conduct.

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