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Attorneys Push To Question Daley In Burge Torture Lawsuit

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Mayor Daley At Wheaton College

Mayor Richard M. Daley addresses a crowd at Wheaton College.

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CHICAGO (CBS) — A renewed push is on to get retired Mayor Richard M. Daley to submit to a deposition about former Chicago Police Cmdr. Jon Burge.

As WBBM Newsradio’s David Roe reports, he Chicago Tribune says attorneys representing Michael Tillman, want a federal judge to force Daley to sit for questioning about knowledge of torture at Burge’s hands. Daley was Cook County State’s Attorney at the time of much of the alleged torture committed by Burge and his detectives.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s David Roe reports

Tillman’s lawsuit alleges that Daley participated in a conspiracy to cover up the torture while he was mayor.

Tillman served two dozen years in prison for a 1986 rape and murder, but his conviction was tossed in 2010.

He claimed Burge’s detectives beat, burned, smothered and threatened to kill him until he confessed, the Chicago Tribune reported.

The motion by Tillman’s attorneys accuses city lawyers representing Daley of dragging their feet for month, and of ignoring requests for a videotaped deposition from Daley.

City Law Department spokesman Roderick Drew responded that Daley is willing to sit for a deposition, but the plan was delayed after his wife, Maggie Daley, passed away, the Tribune reported.

Last year, U.S. District Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer ruled that Daley should remain as a defendant in Tillman’s lawsuit because the immunity did not extend to his time as mayor.

Daley’s attorneys had asked Pallmeyer to reconsider her ruling, but on she denied that request in the fall.

In her 14-page ruling in November, Pallmeyer wrote that Tillman’s “allegations sufficiently support the allegation that Daley participated in a conspiracy to conceal evidence of police torture through his public statements as Mayor, and the internal actions he took (or failed to take) in that role.”

Burge was convicted of perjury last year for lying about torturing prisoners into making confessions. He was sentenced in January to 4 1/2 years in prison, and reported to a federal penitentiary in Raleigh, N.C., a year ago.

Since Burge was fired from the Police Department in 1993, his name has become synonymous with police brutality in Chicago.

Dozens of suspects accused Burge and the detectives under their command of shocking them with a homemade electrical device, suffocating them with typewriter bags, putting guns to their head and playing Russian roulette — all to force them to confess to murders they didn’t commit.

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