Can you imagine being convicted of a crime you did not commit? I can’t, well I guess I can but it is not a good thought. Unfortunately, it happens and probably more than we would like to think.

Thaddeus Jimenez, known as T.J. was just 13 years old when he was arrested and convicted of the 1993 gang-related murder of Eric Morro. He spent 16 years in prison before being released in 2009 after it was shown that another man committed the crime.

Jon Loevy, an attorney for Jimenez was quoted as saying that “[s]ometimes the criminal justice system makes a mistake. In this case, we proved that’s exactly what happened."

Police Framed Jimenez

Loevy was quoted yesterday as saying that the police had framed Jimenez. Police influenced witnesses to falsely implicate Jimenez in the murder and chose to ignore the suspect that confessed.

How Much Is a Mistake Worth?

Apparently, the price for spending 16 years in jail for someone else’s crime is worth 25 million dollars according to a federal jury in Chicago. Chicago’s Department of Law is not happy with the decision. I can see not being happy about having to pay that amount of money, but what if that award is fair?

It is just like in wrongful death cases when the jury awards a large sum of money. Is there a price that is “fair” for a person’s life or freedom?

Jimenez, now in his early 30s, still lives in the suburbs of Chicago but unfortunately he was convicted last month of illegally possessing drugs and is facing up to 3 years in prison at his Feb 1st sentencing.