Chicago City Wire Sears WTTW Reporter for Biased Journalism

June 8, 2023
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Pushing the media’s anti-police mythology, Heather Cherone ignores staggering evidence of corruption in Cook County prosecutor’s office

A collection of articles published by Chicago City Wire is making a laughingstock out of the Chicago media, particularly public television’s Heather Cherone.

One of the lone voices in Chicago aside from CWB Chicago performing some actual journalism, Chicago City Wire recently pilloried an article written by WTTW’s Heather Cherone. A chronic apologist for Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx and a central media figure dedicated to reviling Chicago Police, in a May 16 article Cherone lambasted the Chicago Police Department once again, claiming Chicago proved itself the wrongful conviction capital of the country:

“For the fifth year in a row, Chicago is the wrongful conviction capital of the United States, accounting for more thanhalf of all exonerations recorded nationwide in 2022, according to the annual report from the National Registry of Exonerations.”
“Cook County recorded 124 overturned convictions in 2022, all but two of those were tied to misconduct by two former Chicago police officers, according to the report.”

The public desperately needs a media to cover the exoneration industry in Chicago. Unfortunately, Cherone, WTTW, and the rest of the media refuse to do so. Chicago City Wire reporter Whit Kennedy called Cherone out in his May 22 article, pointing to one case in which two men, Gabriel Solache and Arturo Reyes, were exonerated for a double murder and kidnapping in which even Foxx’s top prosecutors said the men were guilty.

In his article, Kennedy points out that despite believing the men were guilty, prosecutors serving under Foxx freed both men from imprisonment. Kennedy continued to recount how Cook County prosecutors then suspiciously ended opposition to certificates of innocence for the two men. This decision by Foxx’s office made federal lawsuits by both Solache and Reyes that could potentially make both men millionaires far easier and also placed a burden on both the accused former detectives attempting to defend their actions and lawyers representing the city. If only the Solache and Reyes case were the only example, but it’s not.

Kennedy and Chicago City Wire have revealed other Foxx exonerations in which her top attorneys also said they believed exonerated men were guilty and the police did nothing wrong. Not a whiff of this has shown up in Cherone’s reporting, including her article about Chicago being the exoneration capital of the United States.

Reporters in Chicago like WTTW’s Cherone seem to pride themselves on aligning their reporting with the progressive agenda of minority rights; it is a line that reveals itself in almost every one of their exoneration stories. In her May 16 piece published by WTTW, Cherone oozes this rhetoric in her appalling article:

“All but one of the people exonerated in Cook County 2022 were Black or Latino, and four people were exonerated twice after being convicted multiple times of crimes they did not commit, according to the report.”

Virtually every victim of an “exonerated” killer or rapist was also a minority. The victims in the Solache and Reyes case were Latino and in the country illegally, as were the offenders. If Foxx’s top prosecutors, including former First Assistant State's Attorney Eric Sussman, believed the accused men were guilty but freed them, where is the voice for these minority victims who prosecutors concluded police correctly investigated and helped indict? What does it say about a “journalist” who ignores these victims of a crime?

Then Cherone tosses another doozy. She laments the cost of these wrongful convictions:

“Beyond the toll of those wrongful convictions on people’s lives and their families, exonerations and police misconduct are incredibly costly for Chicago taxpayers.”

The true cost of wrongful convictions? None more so than the family members of the victims, who get little if any coverage from the likes of Cherone. How about the two children in the Solache and Reyes case who are now growing up without parents because they were stabbed to death in their own apartment for no reason? How much is the city paying to investigate the crime, indict, convict, and imprison the offenders only to have them released by a prosecutor whose blatant record of deceit and bias has led to an explosion of violent crime and whose own prosecutors continue to publicly doubt the exonerations?

Or even worse, how much has the refusal of journalists like Cherone to cover the evidence of bogus exonerations playing a vital role in police no longer engaging in police work that actually removes criminal offenders from the streets?  In other words, what role do journalists like Cherone play in rising crime, as offenders now understand what a farce criminal justice in Chicago has become under Foxx? Trumped up allegations against officers are perhaps the most common discussion topic in districts, squad cars, and police gatherings.

The truth is that nothing costs the Chicago taxpayers more than the activists calling themselves journalists like Cherone, who refuse to address the evidence undermining the exonerations. Cherone and her ilk are, in essence, public relations outlets for the inmates suddenly coming forward with little more evidence than a dubious, recanted witness statement 20 years after the gruesome murder.

Is it any wonder that public trust in the media is at an all-time low?

Here’s the dark truth about Chicago: The demise of city is tied directly to the demise of independent journalism, not police corruption.

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