Darrell Cannon spent 24 years in prison for murder. He was freed after a review board deemed his confession to be tainted. Police, under the leadership of infamous former Chicago Police Commander John Burge, feigned loading a shotgun, put it in his mouth and pulled the trigger to terrify him. They also have been found to have shocked his genitals with a cattle prod. More than 100, mostly Black, torture victims share similar experiences to the one Cannon endured. Mock executions, electric shocking, suffocation and beating were all methods ordered by Burge to be used on suspects to force a false confessions from 1972 to 1991. In an attempt to make things right, Mayor Rahm Emmanuel and several other Chicago aldermen have proposed that reparations be paid out to the victims of Burge’s reign of terror to the tune of $5.5 million.
In addition to the financial compensations, the city will issue an official apology and a permanent memorial will be established in the city of Chicago dedicated to the victims. Also, free tuition and psychiatric counseling will be made available to the victims and their families. Furthermore, the victims’ story will be made a part of the curriculum for 8th and 10th grade history classes in the Chicago Public School system, so the youth will be educated on the issue.
There is speculation that there will be a $20 million fund started to benefit the Burge victims who cannot take legal action due to the statute of limitations.
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