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Dread Head Cowboy among 5 charged in latest Dan Ryan protest

Adam Hollingsworth and his group were trying to draw attention to Chicago gun violence and the recent killing of a South Side dance coach who provided a safe space to children.

A screenshot of a Facebook Live video Adam Hollingsworth posted of a Thursday afternoon protest that shut down lanes of the Dan Ryan Expressway.
A screenshot of a Facebook Live video Adam Hollingsworth posted of a Thursday afternoon protest that shut down lanes of the Dan Ryan Expressway.
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Adam Hollingsworth — better known at the Dread Head Cowboy — and four others were charged with reckless conduct after protesting on the Dan Ryan Expressway, shutting down lanes for several minutes during the Thursday evening rush.

Hollingsworth and his group were trying to draw attention to Chicago gun violence and the recent killing of a South Side dance coach who provided a safe space to children.

“All this killing — We need to understand we’re losing too much,” Hollingsworth said in a Facebook Live video of the protest. “We lost a good brother, Vee,” referring to the dance coach Verndell Smith.

Illinois State Police said troopers responded to pedestrians and cars blocking traffic in the southbound local lanes near Garfield Boulevard before 4 p.m.

Hollingsworth, 34, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct. He was released from custody later that night.

Four others were charged with reckless conduct and other charges.

Gregory Sherman, 42, faces the most serious charge of the group: aggravated battery of a police officer. Prosecutors said Sherman scuffled with a state trooper who was trying to arrest him. A judge ordered him held on a $25,000 bail.

Hollingsworth made headlines in September when he rode his horse Nunu onto the Dan Ryan Expressway to protest violence against children. Authorities said he rode his horse to exhaustion and charged him with animal cruelty, ordering his horses taken away from him.

“My focus is on the ‘Kids Lives Matter’ because if you look up the history of when it comes down to kids getting killed, 2020 is the highest rate … and it ain’t right,” Hollingsworth said after the 2020 protest.

Hollingsworth initially gained fame earlier that year when he was called on by Mayor Lori Lightfoot to promote the U.S. Census. Hollingsworth rode through South and West Side wards where census responses were lowest in the city.