WBEZ | Burge http://www.wbez.org/tags/burge Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Attorneys for Burge police torture victims don't trust Alvarez to be fair http://www.wbez.org/news/attorneys-burge-police-torture-victims-dont-trust-alvarez-be-fair-103846 <p><p>Attorneys for Burge torture victims say Cook County State&rsquo;s Attorney Anita Alvarez has a conflict of interest when it comes to reviewing Burge cases. &nbsp;</p><p>The attorneys filed a class action lawsuit seeking hearings for Burge victims to see if their claims of torture are credible in light of what we now know about the tactics of former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge. &nbsp;<br /><br />Attorney Flint Taylor said Alvarez is too close to the scandal to be objective even though most of the police torture took place decades ago.<br /><br />&ldquo;Well, you have to remember that there was a continuing cover-up and refusal to prosecute from the state&rsquo;s attorney&rsquo;s office during the entire tenure of Richard Devine, and during that entire tenure Anita Alvarez was an important figure in that office,&rdquo; said Taylor.<br /><br />Taylor said the court should do what they&rsquo;ve done in previous Burge matters, appoint a special prosecutor to represent the state.<br /><br />Paul Castiglione with the state&rsquo;s attorney&rsquo;s office said they&rsquo;ll look at the allegations that the office has a conflict of interest and file a response with the court by mid-December.</p></p> Wed, 14 Nov 2012 14:10:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/attorneys-burge-police-torture-victims-dont-trust-alvarez-be-fair-103846 Burge torture case in hands of Illinois Supreme Court http://www.wbez.org/story/burge-torture-case-hands-illinois-supreme-court-92053 <p><p>The case of an alleged torture victim under former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge is now in the hands of the Illinois Supreme Court. It's the first time in over a decade that a Burge related torture case is in front of the state's highest court. Since then, the former lieutenant was convicted of lying about torturing suspects and was sentenced to prison.<br> <br> The state supreme court heard arguments for the Stanley Wrice case Thursday morning--they will now deliberate whether Wrice will receive a hearing on his claim that officers tortured him into confessing to a rape 30 years ago. Wrice has been in prison since the 80s for that crime.<br> <br> Prosecutors for the state of Illinois argue they could convict Wrice even without the alleged coerced confession. Lead attorney Myles O'Rourke called the torture "harmless error" that doesn't affect the outcome of the case. Justices pressed O'Rourke Thursday on what evidence was available, and he acknowledged there are no fingerprints or DNA.<br> <br> No matter what the outcome, some advocates, like attorney Locke Bowman, say the case will have an affect on the torture scandal as a whole.</p><p>"This is the case that presents the Illinois supreme court with an opportunity to exercise leadership in the Illinois criminal justice system and to take a dramatic step if it chooses to help us put this scandal behind us," Bowman said.<br> <br> Bowman was an attorney for alleged victims in previous torture cases, and he heads the Roderick MacArthur Justice Center at Northwestern University. He said justices could use the Wrice case to grant hearings to other alleged torture victims. He said justices could take a few months, if not longer, to decide the outcome of this case.</p></p> Thu, 15 Sep 2011 21:42:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/burge-torture-case-hands-illinois-supreme-court-92053