Man exonerated in 1994 murder, gunned down outside Chicago

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CALUMET PARK, Ill. — One of four men convicted and later cleared of the 1994 rape and murder of a Chicago woman has been shot to death, the Cook County medical examiner’s office revealed Wednesday.

Michael Saunders, 42, of Homer Glen died of a gunshot to the head. Authorities in Calumet Park, were the shooting occurred Monday, haven’t revealed the circumstances of the crime, deemed a homicide.

Saunders, Harold Richardson, Vincent Thames and Terrill Swift spent more than a decade in prison before DNA evidence exonerated them in 30-year-old Nina Glover’s death. They were later cleared and granted certificates of innocence. They were teenagers at the time of Glover’s death.

In 2011, tests showed that DNA found on Glover’s body matched that of Johnny “Maniac” Douglas, who was one of the first people the police interviewed in Glover’s killing and who later was convicted in another killing. Douglas was shot to death in 2008.

In 2017, the city of Chicago paid $31 million to settle a wrongful-conviction lawsuit filed by Saunders and the three others. Two years later, Cook County paid $24 million to settle claims by Saunders, Richardson and Thames. Swift separately settled his case against Cook County for $5.6 million.

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