Chicago Prosecutor Drops Rape Case After Homeless Man Serves 11-Year Term


It took just 30 minutes for a jury to convict Carl Chatman of raping a Chicago woman in 2002. It has taken the criminal justice system 11 years to conclude that Chatman, then a homeless man, was wrongfully convicted of the charges, reports the Chicago Sun Times. Today, prosecutor Anita Alvarez will announce that the Chatman case is one of two that the State's Attorney's Conviction Integrity Unit will be dismissing today. Chatman, 58, will be released from prison as easrly as today.

“In reviewing the information and evidence in this case, there is not enough sound evidence to uphold the conviction,” said an Alvarez spokeswoman. At trial, the victim told the court that her “screams were not heard” and that the “security measures” at the courthouse failed. In 2004, Chatman was sentenced to 30 years in prison — the maximum — for the alleged sexual assault. One juror told reporters that the “evidence against Chatman was convincing.” The juror didn’t know it wasn't the first time the rape victim had claimed a man raped her after hours in an office building. In 1979, the rape victim claimed that a Polish immigrant assaulted her under eerily similar circumstances.

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