Man Released Years After Possible Wrongful Murder Conviction

In August of 1982, a couple was shot to death as they sat on a Chicago park bench. A man was charged, and the state ultimately gained a murder conviction. He was sentenced to death and spent 16 years on death row. The twists and turns of this case have resulted in Illinois abolishing the death penalty.

Just days before the man was scheduled to be executed, another man came forward and purportedly confessed to committing the murders. As a result, the first man was freed from prison. The second man was convicted and sentenced to serve 37 years. This sentence was pronounced several years ago. However, this man was recently released from prison after he recanted his confession.

According to recent developments, the man’s guilt was called into question. He stated that he was coerced into his confession and offered a share in the profits from future book and movie proceeds. The state now has serious doubts as to the second man’s involvement in the case and in fact suspects that the first man was the actual murderer.

Double jeopardy laws prevent Illinois from re-trying the man for his suspected involvement. The parties who are believed to have perpetrated the alleged conspiracy cannot be prosecuted since the statute of limitations have run out. Both the investigator and a reporter believed to be behind the scheme did not comment, other than stating that the second man’s murder conviction should not have occurred if the state did not meet its burden of proof. In light of these sequences of events, the importance of skilled and experienced resources cannot be over-estimated when one stands accused of a crime.

Source:, “Inmate freed in landmark Illinois case“, Don Babwin and Jason Keyser, Oct. 30, 2014

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