The Chicago City Council is set to pay $14.25 million to a man who spent 21 years in prison for a double murder he didn’t commit in 1992 because he was in police custody in time of the murders.
The city council’s finance committee voted unanimously Thursday to recommend the bylaw, which is slated for a final vote by the full city council on May 25.
Daniel Taylor sued the city in 2014, alleging he confessed after being beaten by officers investigating the November 16, 1992 murders of Jeffrey Lassiter and Sharon Haugabook. Taylor was 17 when he was arrested and charged with the double murder that happened. near Clarendon Park on Chicago’s North Side.
Four men were convicted along with Taylor, and all successfully sued the city, costing Chicago taxpayers $38.05 million.
It cost the city an additional $2.15 million to defend Taylor’s 2014 lawsuit, officials said.
Aldus. Jason Ervin (28th Precinct) called the decision by city attorneys to fight Taylor’s lawsuit “disconcerting.”
Taylor’s lawsuit claimed that officers deliberately withheld evidence that exonerated him. Taylor had been taken into police custody at 6:45 p.m. on the day of the killings and was not released until 10 p.m., more than an hour after the killings.
The case against Taylor fell apart after the Chicago Tribune reported he was in police custody at the time of the murders.
Taylor was released from prison in 2013 after his conviction was overturned and prosecutors dropped the charges against him. By then he had spent 20 years in prison. He was later granted a certificate of innocence by a Cook County judge.
Three other men were also wrongfully convicted of the Lassiter and Haugabook murders.
Lewis Gardner, who was 15 at the time, and Paul Phillips, who was 17 at the time, spent 30 years in prison in connection with the murder. Gardner and Phillips settled their lawsuit against the city four years ago for $10.5 million. Both said they were coerced into confessing to the crime.
The third man convicted in the case was Deon Patrick, who was released from prison after 21 years. He was 20 years old when he was incarcerated.
Patrick also sued that city and a jury awarded him $13.3 million in damages.
Contact Heather Cherone: @HeatherCherone | (773) 569-1863 | [email protected]