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To: Kim Foxx, Cook County State Attorney

Free Darrell Fair: Re-open His Case

Darrell Fair is a student with the Prison + Neighborhood Arts/Education Project, a North Eastern Illinois University Without Walls graduate, a masters degree student at North Park University, an artist who studied under Dr Margaret Buroughs, and a community member and friend to many.
In 1998, a 31 year old Darrell Fair was a survivor of police torture at the hands of detectives Przepiora, Porter and McDermott, as well as Assistant State’s Attorney (ASA) Adrian Mebane. He was interrogated for roughly 30 hours. Upon his arrest, Fair explained to the arresting officers that he had asthma and needed his medication, but he was not allowed to take this medication with him. During the course of the interrogation, Detective McDermott kicked Fair in the leg and threatened to shoot him while holding his service weapon. McDermott has since been fired by the CCSAO's office for perjuring himself about police misconduct committed by his supervisor, Jon Burge. Fair continued to ask for his medication but was denied it, and was also denied food until he agreed to confess to the crime.

The most troubling part of the interrogation is a confession written by ASA Mebane. On the signature line of the first page, Mebane printed Darrell Fair’s name, however Fair never signed it himself. This signature represents a waiver of rights, and without Fair’s signature, the written confession is lacking in credibility. According to Mebane, Fair refused to sign the statement without seeing a lawyer first. When asked about why the waiver was not signed by Fair, Mebane had an inconsistent and vague response. He stated that Fair would have signed there and “if he had wished to sign he probably would have signed there indicating that he understood his rights”. Based on this statement alone, it appears that Fair was not read his rights properly and gives credibility to Fair’s accusations of abuse at Area 2.

Furthermore, none of the corrections made by ASA Mebane, apparently at the request of Fair, were signed by Fair. Once again, Mebane’s reasoning for this omission is both confusing and contradictory. In court, Mebane initially claimed that Fair only refused to sign the second half of the statement, however, the statement proves that Fair did not sign any of the pages because he was not given access to a lawyer. Thus, once again Mebane decreases his credibility in the court as well as the credibility of the confession and Fair’s involvement in the crime.

Why is this important?

Darrell has taken numerous legal actions against his incarceration on the basis of police torture. Most recently, his case was heard by the IL Supreme Court. They upheld a lower court's decision that Darrell did not pass the threshold to prove he qualified for support under the Torture Inquiry Relief Commission.

We are calling on Kim Foxx and the State’s Attorney Office to re-open Darrell’s case. Sign the petition to encourage her to meet with lawyers from the Exoneration Project to discuss Darrell Fair’s case.

Cook County, IL, USA

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Updates

2024-05-08 21:32:56 -0400

100 signatures reached

2024-05-06 15:21:19 -0400

50 signatures reached

2024-04-26 14:08:29 -0400

25 signatures reached

2024-04-23 20:41:36 -0400

10 signatures reached