A Chicago man is facing a felony hate crime charge after he allegedly defaced a sign at a CTA Blue Line stop by writing a racist term on it.
Ryan Slaski, 36, will be held on a $10,000 D-bond following his arrest Thursday on the hate crime charge, as well as additional counts of criminal damage to property and possession of a controlled substance.
He must pay 10% of that amount to be released from jail.
According to Cook County prosecutors, Slaski was at the Clark and Lake Blue Line stop at around 3 p.m. Thursday when police officers observed him using a Sharpie to write something on a CTA sign.
That sign listed each of the various CTA train lines, and at the bottom, Slaski allegedly wrote “Black Line” and added what prosecutors described as a “derogatory racial term” beside it.
Officers saw him finish writing and placed him under arrest. Slaski allegedly identified himself in surveillance video, stating that while he was by the sign and did write something, he couldn’t remember what it was that he wrote.
Prosecutors noted the alleged incident occurred days before a threatened “National Day of Hate,” which has been promoted by hate groups. That has drawn warnings from law enforcement and public officials across Illinois and beyond.
“Obviously this was an offense designed to promote hate,” Judge Ankur Srivastava said during Slaski’s bond hearing.
Slaski is due back in court for a hearing March 3.
Contact Matt Masterson: @ByMattMasterson | [email protected] | (773) 509-5431