Michael Sullivan was wrongly convicted of an 1992 murder case of a Southside Chicago IL cross-shooting incident without actual physical evidence.
He was convicted and sentenced to natural life without the possibility of parole based on the state prosecutor’s two key eyewitnesses identifying him in the backyard as the shooter at the house party where two people were fatally shot in the basement. The same two key eyewitnesses have now come forward recanting their original trial stories & providing two signed affidavits saying that they did not witness Michael shooting or at the crime scene. One of the witnesses said he was in the basement and witnessed one of his friends who fatally shot one of the victims.
He has also received four additional affidavits from 4 other witnesses indicating Michael’s innocence stating they were in the basement and saw their own friends shoot and kill both victims. They all have provided Michael with a total of six signed affidavits supporting his innocence that he’s been maintaining and fighting to prove for 25 years.
During his trial, Michael’s public defender didn’t represent him to the fullest as he should have. He tried to remove himself as his attorney, but the judge denied his request.
There was NO actual physical evidence (such clothing & bullets from all victims bodies or even a gun used at the scene) submitted to support the prosecutor’s case.
Michael was at the railroad tracks with his friends as the cross-shooting was occurring, but the prosecutors indicated that the victims were killed at a far distance by Michael.
The state prosecutor failed to mentioned that the other rival boys at the party in the basement and in parked cars were also shooting at Michael and his friends. They made it seem like Michael and his friends were the only ones shooting and killed the victims.
However, the lost or destroyed evidence (clothing & bullets) would have proven that Michael was innocent and the victims were actually fatally shot at a close range in the basement by their own friends. Now he has spent 25 years of his life behind bars and has been working diligently daily to prove his innocence. He didn’t receive a fair trial.
The medical examiner, prosecutor and detectives somehow lost or destroyed ALL of the victims clothing and bullets that were removed from their bodies. These key important pieces of evidences would have freed Michael, but instead have been improperly mishandled, lost or destroyed to prevent a fair trial. The gunpowder residue from the victim’s clothing and the size of the bullets removed from the victims would have proven that they were fatally shot at a close range by their friends in the basement. Now an expert is needed to prove the ranges, angles & distances.
Over several years, Michael has been reading and studying law books persistently as well as eagerly trying to fight and prove his innocence. He couldn’t afford an attorney so he began to study and file his own briefs/motions/petitions in court. But when Michael filed a brief/motion/petition to the courts to advise of the affidavits as new evidence, he was denied indicating that the same eyewitnesses recantations were not credible and enough to exonerate him.
Because he’s representing himself & filing his own motions/briefs/petitions, has no attorney or any other groups assisting to support him, the courts will not view him the same as they would an attorney or organization that would fight on his behalf. However, we have reached out to an expert to see if he can test or determine if the victims were shot at a close or far distance and at which angle based on the reports & documentation he has. The state’s attorney provided him with all of the testing materials to perform his own testing as needed. Unfortunately, the cost & fees always seems to be the main issue.
He (WE) is/are needing help with either getting him a new trial or exonerated. He has always kept a positive attitude as well as spirit while maintaining to prove his innocence. He smiles and continues to develop himself refusing to allow his circumstances to determine the man he truly is. He’s a family oriented man who has been deprived of raising his children and being with his family who loves him dearly.
Case description taken from