The Exoneration Project

Yesterday, two Exoneration Project clients—Anthony Jakes and Robert Bouto—had their convictions overturned. Jakes and Bouto are not co-defendants, but they were both wrongfully incarcerated as a result of police misconduct. Coincidentally, Jakes and Buoto were both exonerated yesterday in Chicago.

When Jakes was 15-years-old, two notoriously corrupt Chicago police detectives beat him until he falsely confessed to murder. After a special prosecutor conducted a three-month review of Jakes’ case, he determined that the evidence used to convict Jakes did not meet the burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt and requested that his case be dismissed.

In a similar vein, Bouto was convicted after two other corrupt and notorious Chicago police detectives beat and bullied two witnesses into identifying Bouto as the gunman. Bouto’s attorney, Russell Ainsworth, said that both witnesses have since recanted their identification. After investigating the detectives involved in Bouto’s case, it was determined that Bouto was likely innocent, and a Cook County judge agreed to vacate his conviction.

Both men served all their time before they were exonerated—each over 20 years. Congratulations to Jakes, Bouto and their legal teams on their freedom. Read more.