CHICAGO — WGN first introduced you to Charles Green several years ago. He had been arrested at the age of 16 for a quadruple murder on Chicago’s West Side. Sentenced to life in prison, he would spend decades behind bars.
Green was released in 2009 when the case against him crumbled amid questions about police tactics and why eyewitness testimony that could’ve helped Green was not allowed to be heard at trial.
As part of Green’s fight to clear his name, his attorney, Jared Kosoglad, sent an open records request to the Chicago Police Department for “closed complaint register files,” or records of officer misconduct.
The attorney asked for not just the files involving officers in Green’s case, but the entire department going back to the late 1960s, including allegations during the years Mayor Lori Lightfoot led an agency that probes misconduct.
The city declined and Kosoglad filed a lawsuit on behalf Green.
The legal battle eventually made it to the Illinois Supreme Court, which ultimately sided with the city.
But the story doesn’t end there.
In an exclusive interview, Kosoglad tells WGN Investigates he filed another lawsuit this week against Chicago Police in Cook County Circuit Court.
The complaint alleges Green’s records request was denied for “corrupt purposes” and to “conceal evidence of the [department’s] widespread unconstitutional practices.”
“The City of Chicago intends to intentionally keep numerous Chicago citizens wrongfully convicted of crimes through this deception, unconstitutionally depriving individuals like Charles Green with the opportunity to prove their innocence with this evidence,” the complaint states.
A city spokesman didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Previously, city officials have said fulfilling the request is too burdensome and expensive, claiming it would cost millions of dollars to digitize, review and release the decades’ worth of records.
Kosoglad disputes the city’s claim.
“Police misconduct is what’s burdensome,” he said. “Police misconduct is what’s caused all the harm in this city. Transparency is a good thing.”