Chicago man claims murder conviction was based upon blind eyewitness

The key witness in a murder case that put a teenager behind bars for more than 70 years responded Monday to claims that he is legally blind.

Dexter Saffold insists he saw Darien Harris kill one man and wound another. Harris' relatives suggest that even if justice should be blind, a crucial witness to murder should not be. 

“He had dreams of becoming a music producer, and those dreams were taken away from me by the sole testimony of a blind man,” said Nikisha Harris, Darien’s mother. 

Nikisha’s 25-year-old son is serving a 76-year sentence for the shooting death of a man at a service station in Woodlawn back in 2011. On Monday, she and her relatives expressed new hope of proving his innocence, after learning that the judge who convicted her son was never told that the key eyewitness was legally blind.

“We have hope and we have faith that they're going to do the right thing now,” Nikisha said. 

The eyewitness, Saffold, says he has glaucoma but that eye drops help him see.

“I seen him because he ran right past me after the shooting,” Saffold said. “He looked at me because we almost bumped into each other.”

Harris's attorneys also say that security video shows that Saffold didn't even arrive on the scene until after the shooting.  

“It's a combination of not being able to see, and lying under oath,” said Jodi Garvey, defense attorney.

Garvey is hoping that Kim Foxx' conviction integrity unit agrees.