Lansing officer seen in Facebook video pinning boy sued

LANSING, Ill. (WLS) -- A civil rights lawsuit has been filed against a Chicago-area police officer seen on video threatening to kill a black teenager in June for trespassing.

The lawsuit filed Thursday in Chicago federal court says 15-year-old Jordan Brunson was attacked by off-duty Lansing Officer William Mason when the teen never posed a threat. The suit also names Lansing.

A highly viewed Facebook video shows Mason pinning the teen down after he and a white minor allegedly refused to stay off Mason's property. Mason tells Brunson he could kill him.

Plaintiff attorney Andrew Stroth says the Brunson family hoped "to send a message" to Lansing by taking legal action.

A Lansing spokesman says the village didn't have an immediate comment. A message left for Mason at the Lansing Police Department wasn't returned.

Mason is on administrative leave.

Lansing's mayor has asked for the Cook County Sheriff's Office to investigate.

Around 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, June 24, Lansing police responded to a report of a fight in the area of 192nd and Oakwood Avenue.

A 911 caller said approximately 30 juveniles were involved in a fight.

Officers found approximately 30 juveniles in the area; however, the fight had already ended, police said.
Officers met with a 12-year-old boy who said while he was in the area with friends, a 15-year-old boy gave him a beverage that may have contained drugs. The 12-year-old said he got scared and went home and told his family what happened. A short time later, an older brother of the 12-year-old found and confronted the 15-year-old. The two got into a physical altercation, resulting in the 15-year-old being struck in the face repeatedly and receiving minor injuries. He and the other kids with him fled the area prior to an officer's arrival, police said.

According to reports provided by an off-duty Lansing officer, while outside on his home, he found a backpack in his fenced backyard that did not belong to him, with a baseball hat and a realistic looking bb gun inside. He then found the boy on his property bleeding from the face. The 15-year-old said he was just involved in a fight in which he was beaten up.

While speaking with the boy on his porch, another 15-year-old boy approached, also wearing a backpack. Both of the boys attempted to leave at that point, police said. The off-duty officer told them to stay until the arrival of the police. The boys refused to stay and attempted to leave, resulting in the off-duty officer physically detaining one of them, police said. The boys were turned over to on-duty officers upon their arrival.

The boys' parents were contacted and the boys were transported home pending further investigation. Through interviews, it was determined that there were, in fact, no drugs in the beverage.

The Lansing Police Department said it was aware of the video that has been subsequently posted on social media regarding the incident, and had initiated an investigation into the matter prior to its public posting.

The Lansing Police Department asked that anyone with direct information about the incident contact the Lansing Police Department Criminal Investigations Division at 708-895-7150.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2019 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.