All posts by samoneblair2020

Protestors demand new trial for inmate who alleged torture

By Samone Blair
Medill Reports

Protestors gathered at Daley Plaza Feb. 25 to call for the release of Gerald Reed, an inmate who was allegedly tortured by Chicago detectives, after a Circuit Court Judge reversed a decision that had granted him a new trial.

On Feb. 14, Judge Thomas Hennelly reversed the December 2018 decision of Judge Thomas Gainer that granted Reed a new trial.

Reed, 56, was convicted of a double murder in 1990 and claims that he was tortured into giving a false confession. Reed’s allegations include having a metal rod in his leg broken while being interrogated by former Chicago police commander Jon Burge’s detectives.

The protestors wanted to speak to Timothy C. Evans, Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of Cook County, about restoring Judge Gainer’s original ruling.

“Can Judge Evans do something expeditiously? That’s what we want to know,” said Aislinn Pulley, co-executive director of the Chicago Torture Justice Center. “Can he actually remove Judge Hennelly and overturn his ruling?”

The protestors were able to enter the federal building to talk to Judge Evans. Afterward, Cindy Eigler, co-executive director of the Chicago Torture Justice Center, said that Judge Evans agreed to have a meeting with Reed’s mother, Armanda Shackelford. “As far as I know,” said Eigler. “A time has not yet been set.”

In the meantime, Gerald Reed remains in prison.

Photo at top: Protesters called for a new trial for inmate and alleged torture victim Gerald Reed.(Samone Blair/MEDILL)

Q’s on the Quad: Clemson University

By Samone Blair and Emine Yücel
Medill Reports

When asked if they could name five presidential candidates, the majority of Clemson University students surveyed before the South Carolina primary could only name former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders.

All the students Medill School’s Q’s on the Quad talked to had questions they wanted to ask President Donald Trump or the Democratic candidates, but most were unable to name five current or former 2020 presidential election candidates.

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Q’s on the Quad: University of South Carolina

By Samone Blair and Emine Yücel

Medill Reports

The day after the New Hampshire primary, Medill School’s Q’s on the Quad asked students at the University of South Carolina in Columbia whether what’s happening in other state’s primaries would affect who they will be voting for on Saturday’s South Carolina primary. While some said even though it’s important to pay attention to the results of other state’s primaries, it’s not crucial in their decision making. Others emphasized they will decide who they’re voting for based on the candidates’ performances so far.

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