A man who spent over two decades in prison for a drug-related South Side double murder he said he didn’t commit was ordered held in lieu of $1 million bail Tuesday after Cook County prosecutors said they would like to re-try him for the crimes.
Last month, Judge Alfredo Maldonado granted 46-year-old Edward Bolden a new trial for the Jan. 29, 1994 incident.
In his 23-page ruling, the judge noted that the prosecution’s evidence was based on a sole witness — the wounded brother of one of the dead victims — and was “far from overwhelming.” The judge also noted that Bolden’s attorney at that trial, an assistant public defender, failed in trying to locate a key alibi witness.
“We are back to square one,” Maldonado said after setting bail Tuesday.
Many of Bolden’s family and friends who were in court shook their heads.
“The courts are a sham,” one woman said following the brief hearing.
“I would have thought they [prosecutors] would have dropped the charges,” Bolden’s attorney Ronald Safer said.
Despite his disappointment, Safer hopes Bolden eventually will be acquitted.
“The Appellate Court said he was likely innocent,” the defense attorney pointed out.
Bolden had been sentenced to life in prison for the murders of Irving Clayton and Derrick Frazier, who were found in a burning car near 66th and Minerva.
The men were gunned down in a drug deal gone bad.
Bolden was also convicted of the attempted murder of Frazier’s brother, Clifford Frazier, who was shot in the vicinity that day and fingered Bolden as the gunman.
Bolden will be back in court on March 9.