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Judge Vacates Conviction After Man Spends 30 Years Behind Bars

A Cook County Judge has vacated the conviction of Chicago man, Jackie Wilson, who was framed and convicted for the murders of two Chicago police officers. Wilson maintained that he was just an innocent bystander and it was his brother who had pulled the trigger. Wilson alleged that he was tortured and framed and maintained his innocence throughout his incarceration. In addition to vacating Wilson’s conviction, the judge ordered a special prosecutor to investigate whether or not the prosecutor who convicted Wilson perjured himself or suborned perjury from a witness. 

Suborning Perjury and Perjury

Perjury is simply lying under oath. You make a claim that you know is false and present as true to a judge and jury. Defense attorneys and prosecutors both have a duty to uphold the law. Even as defense attorneys, we cannot knowingly place a client on the stand whom we know is guilty and allow that individual to make false claims before the court. When a defendant commits perjury, a second investigation is sometimes initiated into the lawyer who placed that witness on the stand. If it can be determined that the lawyer knew that their client was going to misrepresent the truth, then they are not only guilty of a disbarrable offense, but also a felony.

The judge told the court that some prosecutors venture into dangerous territory where they themselves become the criminal. This happens when they prevent evidence from reaching the defense that would exonerate their client, allow police officers to knowingly lie on the stand, or otherwise violate the law in the execution of their duty.

The Case

Wilson and his brother were both there when two shots were fired at Chicago police officers. Both officers were killed. Both brothers were arrested and both brothers say they were tortured. Wilson was convicted, but his conviction was thrown out. The prosecution again took the case to trial and Wilson was convicted a second time for the murder of one of the police officers.

After an extensive round of aggressive appeals, Wilson finally got the decision he wanted. The judge vacated his conviction on the grounds that Chicago police had tortured the confession out of him. Wilson was placed on trial a third time, but the case fell apart when a Cook County prosecutor allegedly lied on the stand. The prosecutor lost his job and the charges were dropped.

The case has now ended without a formal finding of guilty or not guilty. Wilson maintains that it was his brother who pulled the trigger. A witness for Wilson corroborated his account of events. Now, a special prosecutor will be appointed to determine the extent of police and prosecutorial misconduct. If the allegations are true, the prosecutor may find himself alongside many of those whom he put away.

Talk to a Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney

Have you railroaded an innocent man by suborning perjury? If so, you might need a Chicago criminal defense attorney. Call David Freidberg today at (312) 560-7100 and we can begin preparing your defense immediately.

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