More Than a Dozen Men Ask Court to Formally Declare Their Innocence - NBC Chicago

More Than a Dozen Men Ask Court to Formally Declare Their Innocence

All of the men said they were framed by disgraced former Chicago Police sergeant Ronald Watts and the tactical team he once commanded on Chicago’s South Side

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    More Than a Dozen Men Ask Court to Formally Declare Their Innocence
    Fifteen men whose convictions were thrown out last month in a single hearing, are now asking for formal certificates of innocence. All of the men said they were framed by disgraced former Chicago Police sergeant Ronald Watts and the tactical team he once commanded on Chicago’s South Side.

    Fifteen men whose convictions were thrown out last month in a single hearing, are now asking for formal certificates of innocence. 

    All of the men said they were framed by disgraced former Chicago Police sergeant Ronald Watts and the tactical team he once commanded on Chicago’s South Side. Certificates for the former suspects are the first step in recovering damages from the state for wrongful convictions. 

    Defense attorney Joshua Tepfer noted that even the state agreed the charges against the men, 18 convictions in all, should be dismissed. 

    “In these cases, we concluded, unfortunately, that police were not being truthful,” Mark Rotert, the head of the State’s Attorney’s Conviction Integrity Unit said. “We couldn’t have confidence in the integrity of their reports and their testimony.” 

    15 Wrongful Convictions Thrown Out in Cook County

    [CHI] 15 Wrongful Convictions Thrown Out in Cook County

    15 men who say they spent years in prison for crimes they didn't commit have had their convictions thrown out in the first ever mass exoneration in Cook County. Phil Rogers has the latest on this incredible story. 

    (Published Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017)

    Shortly after the convictions were overturned, seven members of Watts’ tactical team were placed on desk duty. 

    “Petitioners are innocent because there were no criminal offenses,” Tepfer wrote. “Each were framed by Chicago police officers we now know routinely framed citizens of public housing, in furtherance of their own criminal actions.” 

    At least 20 individuals, with 26 convictions among them, have been exonerated by the courts, after evidence was presented of wrongful behavior by Watts and his team. A hearing on the newest motion is set for next Tuesday.

    Calls For Freedom in Another Watts Case

    [CHI] Calls For Freedom in Another Watts Case

    Cook County prosecutors say they are at least considering the petition of still another defendant who says he fell victim to disgraced Sgt. Ronald Watts and the tactical team he ran on Chicago’s South Side. Phil Rogers reports.

    (Published Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017)

    Get the latest from NBC Chicago anywhere, anytime

    • Download the App

      Available for IOS and Android