His sister held him tightly (*28*) he left Stateville Jail.
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He was greeted by associates and kinfolk, together with his cousin, who was his alibi years in the past. As an alternative of believing his household, police and prosecutors believed the now-disgraced former Chicago police detective Reynaldo Guevara.
“No person needed to imagine us however now right here we’re. Do you imagine us now?” Cruz stated.
Cruz was sentenced to 90 years for a murder conviction that was vacated Monday. Cruz is now 53. He spent greater than 28 years in jail.
“This can be a pleased second,” Cruz stated. “This can be a pleased second. There may be nothing to be unhappy about. I am not indignant. I forgive Guevara and everyone who did what they did to me.”
“I am so pleased that justice got here,” stated Jose Ortiz, Cruz’s nephew. “Clearly, it did not come quick sufficient for my grandmother to see this and my grandfather and my aunts and uncles that handed away.”
“They informed me my father has most cancers. It was very tough. And my brother had most cancers. It was tough. My mother handed. It was very tough additionally,” Cruz stated.
In accordance to Cruz’s lawyer, there are greater than 50 instances related to Guevara and to date, about half have been thrown out. Guevara retired and has not been charged.
“He was artful on how he bought individuals convicted and now he is being artful about how he is not going to get in bother himself,” stated Middle on Wrongful Convictions’ Greg Swygert, who’s Cruz’s lawyer.
Finally, Cruz hopes to get a Certification of Innocence in order to have his conviction expunged. For now, Cruz went instantly to his aunt’s restaurant for jibarito, a Puerto Rican specialty. And later this week, he plans to be in court docket supporting inmates who’re hoping their exoneration in subsequent.
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