After being found guilty of killing an off-duty Cook County Jail officer in October 2000, Bernard Mims subsequently spent 12 years in prison. The slain officer was Dwayne Baker, who was gunned down in Chicago after Gangster Disciples members mistook him for a member of rival Black Disciples gang.
Back in 2016, Mims was freed back in 2016 after prosecutors threw out his conviction, as the Chicago Tribune reports. A 2015 re-investigation conducted by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Conviction Integrity Unit played a significant part in getting Mims' conviction vacated and the then-36-year-old was eventually awarded a certificate of innocence from the state. At the time, Mims' lawyer, Kathleen Zellner, claimed her client couldn't have committed the crime as he was bedridden by his own gunshot wound when Baker was shot.
Now, Mims is suing the city of Chicago and nine Chicago Police officers for “engineer[ing] a case” by fabricating and withholding evidence in order to make sure Mims was convicted, WTTW reports.
“To further their objective the Defendant Officers withheld exculpatory evidence, manipulated witnesses and misdirected the investigation away from the individuals the Defendant Officers knew to be the likely perpetrators,” reads part of a 26-page complaint, which was filed on Friday. “As a result, Plaintiff was prosecuted for a crime in which he had no involvement.”
The city’s Law Department has not yet made a statement on the matter at the time of this posting.
Since being released, Mims has been rearrested for aggravated battery in 2017 and for his alleged role in a Minnesota heroin trafficking and distribution ring earlier this year.
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