Updated: October 5, 2013 1:56AM
A man who spent 23 years wrongfully imprisoned for murder is suing the Chicago Police, accusing the department of framing him for a 1990 slaying outside a Wrigleyville bar.
Lathierial Boyd, freed in September from an 82-year prison sentence, is seeking more than $120 million in restitution for being implicated by police when nine out of 10 witnesses said he was not the triggerman, according to the suit filed Friday in U.S. District Court.
The tenth witness, a man who survived the shooting, initially told police he never saw his attacker but later changed his story, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said when charges were dropped.
“It is my position that this man did not commit this crime,” Alvarez said at a news conference exonerating Boyd when he was released last month.
According to prosecutors since-discredited account, on a snowy February night in 1990 Boyd — armed with an Uzi — opened fire on a man who owed him $1,000 outside the reggae club Exedus just as the bars near Wrigley Field were emptying.
The spray of bullets left Ricky Warner paralyzed. His cousin, Michael Flemming, who was standing nearby, died in the shooting.
The lawsuit claims that the two men were selling marijuana and “fake cocaine” to club goers at the time, and had some trouble with members of the Vice Lords street gang and a “group of Jamaicans.”
A car similar to one owned by a known member of the Vice Lords was seen speeding away from the shooting scene, the suit states.
However, police withheld those eyewitness accounts from prosecutors, the suit alleges.
“Rather than perform any reasonable investigation” Chicago Police “decided it would be easier to frame” Boyd, the suit states.
But beyond withholding witness accounts, the suit alleges investigators also fabricated evidence that falsely implicated Boyd, the suit states.
Boyd, who described his time in jail as a “Kafkaesque nightmare,” claims he lost contact with his two daughters while incarcerated, and even says he lost an eye.
“With a maximum hatred for a minimum reason [Chicago Police] set out to frame Lathierial,” the suit states.