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File Under Fiction Devine, D. Dick Devine’s Rewrite of the Alstory Simon Case

Chicago Daily Observer 1 January 2015 No Comment

From the Chicago Tribune

Anthony Porter was convicted of murdering two people in Washington Park in August 1982 and was sentenced to death. Porter’s execution date was delayed when his attorneys raised questions about his mental competency. While that issue was pending, Simon gave a videotaped statement to Paul Ciolino, a private investigator working with Northwestern University’s Medill Innocence Project, confessing to the same murders that were the basis for Porter’s conviction.

A copy of the Simon video was sent to the Cook County state’s attorney’s office soon after it was taken and viewed by the top supervisors in the office. After seeing the video and discussing it, I concluded that our office should undertake an immediate reinvestigation of the Washington Park murders and that we should allow Porter an opportunity to be out on bail while the investigation took place.


From Martin Preib

There was one major problem, which remained hidden from the public. The prosecutor at the State’s Attoney’s Office in 1999 who was the most familiar with the Porter case, Thomas Epach, did not buy the Northwestern claims. He believed Porter was guilty and Simon was innocent. He should know. As chief of the criminal division, he was the foremost expert on the case. Despite the fact that then State’s Attorney Dick Devine had released Porter and taken Simon into custody, Epach stated in a recent affidavit that he confronted Devine in 1999 about the overwhelming evidence against Porter. Despite Epach telling Devine that Porter was guilty, Devine left Porter free and had Simon jailed in the county jail to await sentencing.

image Iowa State Law Library

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