Inmate in Chicago police torture case released, granted retrial
CHICAGO (Fox 32 News) - A man who spent nearly 30 years behind bars after he says he was tortured into a confession by a former Chicago police commander's gang of detectives is free, for now.
James Gibson posted bond Thursday after he was able to get an Illinois Appeals Court to grant him a new trial. His first two attempts at a retrial had been overruled by the same judge. Gibson was sentenced to life in prison for the double murder of an insurance salesman and his client in 1989.
His family says he was battered by the police.
"His face was swollen, so I knew there was something wrong," said Gibson's sister Lorraine Brown.
"James was held at that police station over the course of three whole days. James was systematically tortured, mentally and physically," said Mark Clements with the Chicago Torture Justice Center.
At Thursday's bond hearing was the son of one of Gibson's alleged victim's Lloyd Benjamin. In 1989, Benjamin was working in Englewood, delivering a bottle to one of his insurance clients, when police claimed Gibson and others attempted to rob the men. The men were shot to death.
"Nobody should have to go identify their father in the morgue with one gunshot here, and another gunshot here, nobody should have to do that, I did that," said Bill Benjamin, who was 32 at the time of his father's murder. "Everyone's advocating for murderers now a days. I'm not understanding it. What about the victims? What about the victims families?"
The judge set Gibson's bond at $20,000 Thursday. Once posting bond, Gibson was placed on electronic monitoring. A date for his retrial has not been set.