by B. White
The conviction of former Alderman Michael McGee has come back as many of us knew it would. It’s not a matter of his guilt or innocence but the process in which he was tried.
Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals of the 7th Circuit Court, which oversees district courts in Wisconsin, called out the judge, prosecutor and McGee’s attorney for very serious mistakes they made during his 2008 trial.
The three-judge panel raised serious questions in how the case was handled. The main issue was did the jury see the judge’s order that was issued to allow the FBI to use wiretaps to secretly record McGee’s phone calls and to show the judge who approved the wiretap.
There is an appeals court ruling that this kind of information released could lead a jury to believe someone is guilty simply because there was enough evidence for a wiretap.
The Court asked “How could this possibly have happened? This is serious misconduct,” Chief Appeals Court Judge Frank Easterbrook said during the recent oral arguments in Chicago.
“Often there are mistakes made in a criminal case by the prosecutor. This was deliberate.”
Of course, the prosecutors cried foul claiming it was only a mistake. It was not intentional that we violated McGee’s civil rights. Just think how many others who have had their civil rights violated. Stinson comes to mine was that a mistake too?
During the arrest of the former alderman, many in the community cried out for a due process for the alderman. Here it was if a layman could see that what was being done through the judiciary system to Michael McGee Jr. where only was he denied a due process, prosecutors and the judge knew better than we did what they were doing was illegal and unconstitutional.
Again, we are not talking about the innocence or guilt of Alderman McGee. We are talking about fairness of the judiciary system.
Many may not have understood the entire legal lingo but what everyone knew was that something was wrong with that picture.
Again, here it is the judiciary system from the police to the prosecutor, to the judge and even to McGee’s own lawyer all of whom were either incompetent or maliciously decided to get him even if they had to violate all his civil rights. This is the system that taxpayers pay big money to yes to prosecute those who commit crimes but we do it by the book—the law.
I-Witness personally thanks the three-judge panel of the US Appeals Court for calling them all on the carpet for the malevolent miscarriage of justice. The jury convicted McGee on nine counts of bribery, extortion, attempted extortion and for trying to hide a $30,000 transaction. He was sentence to nearly seven years in prison. The US Appeals Courts will render their decision anytime regarding McGee. They can do one of two things; uphold the conviction, or reverse it and return the case to U.S. District Judge Charles Clevert for a possible new trial.
I commend this community for raising the questions they did regarding the handling of the McGee trial. Y’all understood one thing: in America it doesn’t matter if one is guilty or innocent they must be given due process. For an injury to one is an injury to us all. Anyone of us could be next; at least we deserve fairness.