SYCAMORE, Ill. — A man whose conviction in the 1957 kidnapping and slaying of a 7-year-old was overturned by a DeKalb County judge earlier this year is asking to be declared innocent of the crime.
Attorneys from a free legal clinic at the University of Chicago representing the wrongfully convicted filed a petition in DeKalb County requesting a court hearing for Jack McCullough, the Daily Chronicle (http://bit.ly/2dLyIZQ ) reported.
McCullough was convicted in 2012 and sentenced to life in prison in connection with the death of Maria Ridulph.
Attorneys wrote McCullough didn’t commit the crime for which he spent nearly five years in prison and that he wants to move on with his life.
Earlier this year, DeKalb County State’s Attorney Richard Schmack concluded that the combination of FBI reports and new evidence from a Rockford pay phone, from which McCullough is believed to have placed a collect call the evening of the girl’s disappearance, proved McCullough had an alibi.
DeKalb County Judge, William Brady, vacated McCullough’s conviction and dismissed charges, but declined to declare him innocent, saying he didn’t believe prosecutors had ill motives.
Due to Brady’s ruling there is a possibility the conviction and charges could be reinstated in the future.
If McCullough were given a certificate of innocence and cleared from the crime, he would be entitled to compensation from the state for false imprisonment.
The compensation amount for those who are wrongfully convicted and serve five years or less are limited to $85,350 by state law.
This story has been corrected to show that Maria Ridulph wasn’t killed in 2012, but that Jack McCullough was convicted in 2012.
Information from: The Daily Chronicle, http://www.daily-chronicle.com