Photo Courtesy Eastern Illinois University
Photo Courtesy Eastern Illinois University

The governor of Illinois on Thursday called for an investigation into allegations that police held a black college student at gunpoint after misidentifying him as a suspect.  

Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s statement comes after Jaylan Butler, 20, sued the six officers involved for unlawful searches and seizure, excessive force and false arrest on a Sunday night last February. Butler, a swim team member at Eastern Illinois University, said he was walking back to the team bus near a rest stop off Interstate 80 when patrol cars pulled up to him.

He then dropped to his knees, put his hands up and dropped the cell phone he was holding, according to the complaint filed by the ACLU of Illinois, which is representing him. The officers told Butler to get down as they approached with guns drawn, the complaint said, forced him to lie face down and handcuffed him. One officer allegedly put a handgun against Butler’s head, threatening to blow his head off, but stopped after the bus driver and swim coach explained he was traveling with the team. 

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