COVID-19 Update: We Are Open 24/7 to Service Current and New Clients.

Articles Tagged with Chicago murder lawyer

A jury found that a defendant who spent more than 20 years behind bars for a double murder was intentionally framed for the incident by police. The defendant was awarded a new trial after he successfully argued that his criminal defense attorney failed to call witnesses to the stand that would have corroborated his alibi. These witnesses claimed that the defendant was inside of a restaurant playing Pac Man at the time of the double shooting. The only witness that the prosecution offered was a man who was allegedly shot by the defendant during the double murder and the brother of one of the victims. It was the defendant who called police to the scene of the crime to report the shooting. Let that be a lesson on the perils of involving police in any matter at all.

After vacating his conviction, the defendant filed a lawsuit against Chicago police and the city. The complaint alleged that the arresting officer called the suspect a racial epithet and said that no one cares about Black people, which is why the officers would get away with it. A federal jury returned an award of $25.2 million to the plaintiff. 

The lineup

It was a case in which everything worked the way it was supposed to work. A 9-year-old was murdered, yes, but witnesses came forward to finger the gunman and help the police arrest a suspect

It happened like this. A gunman rolled up on the 900 block of North Cambridge Street, got out of his car, and fired a gun at an intended target. He missed that target and ended up shooting a 9-year-old boy several times before the child died of his injuries. 

According to the Alderman of this community\, the men involved in the dispute had known each other for over 50 years and a feud between them led to the shooting. The Alderman stated that neither man was a member of the community and that neither man lived in the row houses where the shooting took place.

A video captures a police officer kneeling on a man’s neck for nearly nine minutes. The man dies. The officer involved, Derek Chauvin, is charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter charges prompting outrage that led to civil unrest all across the country. The medical examiner releases a report saying that George Floyd died of a number of factors including Chauvin’s knee and poor overall health.

The question of whether or not Chauvin “intended” to kill Floyd is now at the heart of this case. In this article, we will take a look at the charges, and discuss why folks are so angry over the judicial process.

Third-Degree Murder and Second-Degree Manslaughter

matt-popovich-60437-copy-300x162The trial of Shomari Legghette is set to begin. Legghette is charged with murdering 31-year Chicago police commander Paul Bauer after the two men tussled in a stairwell outside the Thompson Center in February of 2018. Legghette faces an uphill battle. Legghette faces a first-degree murder charge along with several drug and weapons charges. Legghette, who is a four-time convicted felon, may take the stand on his own behalf. He will say that the killing was in self-defense and the defense will introduce evidence that Bauer and Legghette had a long acrimonious history.

Taking the Stand on Your Own Behalf

The decision to place a defendant who is facing criminal charges on the stand is a difficult one for an attorney to make. If you allow your client to take the stand, it opens the prosecution up to bring in other evidence of past crimes. In this case, however, the defense may have no choice. It is common for those who argue that a killing was justified because it was done in self-defense to take the stand.

ryan-ei-cl8xcbco-unsplash-copy-300x200Hours after sharing a meal together, an unnamed woman shot and killed her boyfriend, Steef Giovanni Corniel. The woman told police that Corniel had struck her several times and been physically abusive in the past. She said that Corniel had struck her while she was driving and later choked her at her apartment. He also threatened to kill her mother, according to the woman.

River Grove police chief Mike Konwinski believes the woman should be charged with murder, but Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx says that there is not enough evidence to prosecute. Corniel’s family believes that the woman should be charged and in a statement, Corniel’s grandfather claimed that the killing was not self-defense, it was murder.

What Happened?

marco-chilese-2sMbKyQvom4-unsplash-copy-200x300A member of the Satan Disciples gang is under investigation over the murder of his cellmate, 19-year-old Pedro Ruiz, who is believed to be a member of a rival gang known as the Almighty Saints. The 24-year-old inmate, whose name was not released to the press, is also believed to have been a part of a vicious beating on a Cook County inmate three months prior. The name of the suspect will not be released until he has been charged with the murder, authorities said.

The same inmate was locked up on charges that he used a rifle to injure a man in 2017. Police say that he was among five detainees who ruthlessly beat another inmate. Video surveillance shows him punching and kicking a 41-year-old victim. Other members of the group then stabbed him with a shank. 

“No Comment”

robert-hickerson-38585-copy-200x300Anton Carter yawned and smirked after the judge told him he would be spending the rest of his life in prison for the murder of off-duty Chicago police officer Michael Bailey. The prosecution argued that Carter knew Bailey was a cop, which made the life sentence mandatory according to Illinois statutes. The judge in the case, Stanley Sacks, delivered a scathing rebuke of Carter, who at times looked bored at his sentencing hearing. The outcome of the sentencing was already predetermined by statute. Those convicted of murdering a police officer knowingly must face a mandatory life sentence. The judge noted that in some cases, mandatory sentencing parameters are unfair. In the case of Carter, Sacks made no such allowance.

Meanwhile, Bailey’s family spoke of forgiveness and appeared to make allowances for Carter who, they said, “never had a chance” in life. The family did say that the sentence helped them gain closure and that they can now move on with their lives.

Understanding the Law

ryan-ei-cl8xcbco-unsplash-copy-300x200Vertis Peterson was out on bond for an unrelated weapons charge when police say he repeatedly shot his neighbor’s brother multiple times. Records show that Peterson posted a $200 bond after being charged with felony weapons possession and a misdemeanor count of marijuana possession. 

According to police, Peterson was standing on his porch next to his grandmother when he got into an argument with his neighbor’s brother, a 63-year-old man who had the apparent misfortune of walking down the block at the same time Peterson was on the porch. Peterson pulled a .22 on the man and allegedly fired it six times hitting him in the hip, abdomen, and arm. The 63-year-old survived the assault, but not Peterson is facing an attempted first-degree murder charge. His grandmother refused to allow him entry to her home after he emptied his revolver into the neighbor’s brother. The man was able to identify Peterson in a photo lineup. 

Peterson has two prior convictions for domestic battery.

brandon-mowinkel-211936-unsplash-copy-300x200One of the most carefully watched criminal trials in recent memory hit a snag when defense attorneys claimed that the prosecution withheld evidence in the Tyshawn Lee murder trial. Two men are charged with murdering the 9-year-old boy in a gang-related killing. The two are accused of targeting the boy because they believed his father had been involved in an attack targeting one of the defendant’s family members.

What Did the Prosecution do?

Essentially, the prosecution failed to provide evidence that police had stopped two young men that fled the scene of a music video being shot. The gun that killed Tyshawn Lee was later recovered from that incident. During the trial, police suddenly remembered that they had made this stop and informed prosecutors. Prosecutors handed this information over to the defense while the trial was underway, and the defense was rightfully upset to be learning about it well into the trial.

tertia-van-rensburg-37121-copy-300x224The trial of Brendt Christiansen, the man accused of murdering Chinese exchange student Yingying Zhang, has begun. Amid claims that there is surveillance evidence showing Christiansen admitting Zhang into his car the night she was murdered, the prosecution will introduce evidence gathered by his longtime girlfriend, who wore a wire for federal investigators, against Christiansen at trial. She will claim that Christiansen repeatedly indicated to her that he wanted to be a serial killer and made other inflammatory proclamations.

Defense attorneys, however, are questioning her sanity and her competency to bear witness against her former boyfriend. They are attempting to subpoena psychiatric evaluations of the former girlfriend citing that it is relevant to the quality of her testimony. Additionally, the witness, referred to only as T.B., will provide evidence that she introduced him to the “BDSM lifestyle” which vaguely translates into fetishists who enjoy bondage and domination. 

“Damaged and Unstable”

Contact Information