Chicago’s Finance Committee approves another Burge settlement


Jon Burge in 2010. Photo credit: José M. Osorio/Chicago Tribune

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CHICAGO — The City Council’s Finance Committee approved another settlement tied to the torture scandal under former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge.

Monday, the committee agreed to pay Alonzo Smith $5.25 million. It will move to the full city council on Wednesday.

Smith claimed two detectives tortured him into confessing to a 1983 murder that he did not commit.

Smith would serve 20 years in prison before prosecutors dismissed the conviction and a judge granted him a new trial.

His Burge related lawsuit is the only one where former Mayor Daley gave a sworn deposition, which remains sealed.

The lawsuit claimed Daley knew about the torture happening under Burge and did nothing.

The Burge scandal has already cost the city $100 million in jury awards, court settlements, and legal fees.

If passed by the committee, the full city council will consider it on March 13.

The Chicago Police Department fired Burge in 1993.

In 2010, Burge was convicted in federal court of perjury and obstruction of justice for lying under oath during a civil suit deposition in which he denied witnessing torture or abusing suspects.

Burge spent 4 1/2 years in prison and on home confinement.

He eventually moved to Florida, while collecting a $4,000-a-month pension, until his death in September.


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