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Man Hopes Prosecutorial Misconduct Wins Him New Trial In Family Massacre Case

Fedell Caffey, Debra Evans

Fedell Caffey (left) was convicted of the murder of Debra Evans and her two children, and of cutting an unborn baby out of Evans’ womb. (Credit: Illinois Department of Corrections/CBS)

Nancy Harty Nancy Harty
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CHICAGO (CBS) — A man convicted in the 1995 murder of Debra Evans–in a plot to steal her unborn child–is hoping testimony of a former prosecutor can help him get a new trial.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports, the assistant DuPage County state’s attorney who won convictions against Fedell Caffey and two others is being interviewed as part of an evidentiary hearing in Caffey’s bid for a new trial.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports

Caffey is serving life in Menard Correctional Center for the 1995 murders of Evans and her two children and cutting her unborn child out of her womb.

Attorneys for the 39-year-old claim that he is innocent, and that the prosecutor bought drugs from a witness in the case and may have given preferential treatment to suspects who knew about it.

Caffey was not in court when U.S. Judge Michael Kennelly said he will rule on Tuesday on whether documents about the prosecutor, Jeffrey Kendall, can be used in the inmate’s petition.

The judge heard lawyers for Caffey and the Illinois attorney general’s office discuss the issue in his chambers before putting the transcript under seal.

Prosecutors said on Nov. 16, 1995, Caffey and his girlfriend’s cousin, Levern Ward, killed Debra Evans, her 10-year-old daughter, Samantha, and her 7-year-old son, Joshua. Afterward, they cut Evans’ full-term fetus from her womb. The baby, named Elijah, survived and is now a teenager, living downstate with his grandfather.

Caffey, his girlfriend, Jacqueline Williams, and Ward, were all convicted for their roles in the murders.

Immediately following the murders, Caffey’s cousins claimed he wasn’t even there, and that Williams planned and carried out the murders on her own. Caffey’s family said Williams had told him she was pregnant, and needed to produce a baby so he wouldn’t leave, CBS 2 reported in 1995.

That baby was allegedly the one cut from Debra Evans.

Caffey’s death sentence was commuted to life in prison when then-Gov. George Ryan cleared Death Row in 2003.