2 Chicago Men Convicted Of A 1994 Rape, Murder May Walk Free Thursday

CHICAGO (CBS) — The fate of a Southside man is in the hands of a judge.

He spent two decades in jail for a crime, forensic evidence may prove he did not commit.

CBS 2’s Mike Puccinelli has more outside the Leighton Criminal Court Building where a judge will make that decision later on Thursday morning.

They’ve been behind bars for well over 20 years and on Thursday they could be granted their freedom.

Nevest Coleman and Darrell Fulton were convicted of the 1994 rape and murder of a woman in Englewood. The two found the body in the basement of Coleman’s home and called police.

That basement, attorneys said was not secured properly and was frequently used by drug addicts and homeless people.

But officers who trained under the disgraced police Commander John Burge, turned their attention on Coleman and Fulton who eventually both confessed to the murder.

DNA evidence taken from the victims body has subsequently linked the crime to a serial rapist who is still at large.

“Nevest Coleman is currently sitting in prison where he has been for 23 years for a crime he did not commit,” said Coleman’s attorney, Russell Ainsworth. “He wants to be home. We want him safe. We don’t want him incarcerated a day longer.”

The same judge who sentenced Coleman to life in prison 20 years ago, will determine Thursday whether he should be released.

At one point, prosecutors in this case actually sought to put Coleman to death.

Now he could walk free after being locked up since shortly after the crime happened in 1994.

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