New ‘Chicago Police Torture Archive’ details acts of Jon Burge and underlings

The new site, launched by the Invisible Institute, includes profiles and interviews with numerous victims of Burge and his “midnight crew.” Scores of court transcripts, depositions, media clips and photos are also included in the archive.

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Former Chicago Police Cmdr. Jon Burge. | Sun-Times files

Former Chicago Police Cmdr. Jon Burge

Sun-Times files

The Invisible Institute, a nonprofit journalism organization, launched Wednesday the “Chicago Police Torture Archive” — a centralized home for scores of records that detail the torturous acts carried out by disgraced and convicted former Chicago Police Cmdr. Jon Burge and his underlings.

The new site includes profiles and interviews with numerous victims of Burge and his “midnight crew.” It’s believed that Burge and the detectives under his command tortured more than 100 people — mostly Black men — into giving false confessions from the 1970s to early 1990s.

“The launch of the archive is another important step in establishing the true and complete narrative about this systemic and racist torture and cover-up,” attorney Flint Taylor, who has represented many Burge victims over several decades, said in a statement.

Scores of court transcripts, depositions, media clips and photos are also included in the archive.

In 2011, Burge was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison for lying under oath in civil lawsuits connected to the torture. After being released early for good behavior, he went to a halfway house near his Florida home, followed by home confinement. Burge was allowed to keep his $3,039-a-month pension. He died in 2018 at 70.

Chicago paid $5.5 million in reparations to 57 Burge torture victims in 2016; those claims were awarded through a process overseen by the Chicago Torture Justice Memorials organization.

In 2015, the Invisible Institute launched another online portal detailing 56,000 misconduct complaints lodged against CPD officers.

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