Why Do Pundits Like Kass Ignore Illegal Alien Crime in Chicago?
Time to show the dark sides of Rahm’s sanctuary city?
While the nation mourns and debates the murder of a university student at the hands of an illegal immigrant this summer in Iowa and the senseless immigration policies that allowed it to take shape, an equally dire case in Chicago goes untold.
It’s a powerful sign of the media machine operating in our city that so much honest debate about the horrible murder of Mollie Tibbets, attacked when she went jogging earlier this summer, has reverberated around the country, while the release of two illegal aliens for a double murder in Chicago has garnered so little attention.
Arturo Reyes and Gabriel Solache, along with a woman named Adriana Mejia, were convicted of murdering Jacinta and Mariano Soto in 1998 by repeatedly stabbing the couple in their own apartment. According to prosecutors, the three offenders then kidnapped the Sotos’ children. The two men were illegal aliens at the time of the murders.
Reyes got life. Solache was sentenced to death but was saved from execution by Governor George Ryan, who ended the death penalty in Illinois in 2003.
Late last year, Cook County State’s Attorney First Assistant Eric Sussman declined to retry the two men after their convictions were dropped. The two men had claimed their confessions were coerced, part of a pattern of misconduct by Detective Reynaldo Guevara, now retired.
But even as Sussman allowed the men to be released from prison, he stated that he nevertheless believed they were guilty of the murders.
From the Chicago Tribune:
First Assistant State’s Attorney Eric Sussman said prosecutors still strongly believe Gabriel Solache and Arturo Reyes are guilty of the 1998 fatal stabbing of a couple in their Bucktown neighborhood home. . . .
Here’s a question neither Sussman nor his boss, State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, were ever asked, nor did they ever explain, even though it cries out from the exoneration of the two men and the statement that prosecutors still thought they were guilty.
Are they arguing that detectives coerced a true confession from the men?
And what about the fact that the third offender, Adriana Mejia, still resides in prison for the crime and still claims the two men were involved?
The silence of the media over this case is deafening, and the refusal of local journalists and columnists like the Chicago Tribune’s John Kass to take it up is disheartening. It makes one wonder to what degree the media functions as a watchdog for the public at all.
Another side note about the case: Sussman left the prosecutor’s office abruptly after Solache and Reyes were released. That strange turn of events has been ignored by the media, as well.
But there are other reasons why the Solache and Reyes case is so suspicious and why it should garner as much attention as the Tibbetts case.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel has flouted President Trump’s immigration reform policies, openly declaring Chicago a sanctuary city. Sanctuary for guys like Solache and Reyes, one wonders? Emanuel’s policy is clearly challenged by this case, if only the local journalists would ask him about it.
Here is another reason why the exoneration of the men is so suspicious. The decision to set the men free was part of a larger about-face by current Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx from her predecessor, Anita Alvarez, on a host of cases. Alvarez’s administration stood by Guevera’s investigations in the face of many accusations against retired Detective Reynaldo Guevera, including those by Solache and Reyes.
From the Sun-Times:
The Cook County state’s attorney’s office has decided not to reopen any of six murder cases referred to it by City Hall involving allegations that the men convicted were framed by former Chicago police Detective Reynaldo Guevara.
Prosecutors reviewed the cases and found no cause to reopen any of them, says Fabio Valentini, a top prosecutor for State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.
How can one prosecutor so completely change policy about murder cases and not face some scrutiny from the local media? How can local journalists and columnists across the country discuss a case in Iowa but ignore this one?
Well, there is one obvious possibility. Perhaps one reason Kass will not touch this story is that his employer, the Chicago Tribune, has been a vocal advocate of such troubling exonerations like that of Solache and Reyes and the law firms fighting their cause.
But consider this. In the midst of so many claims that Solache and Reyes were innocent, the city sought the opinion of an outside law firm. That firm, Sidley Austin LLP, also bolstered the guilt of the two men:
“In fact, we have concluded that evidence available to us leads us to reject their claims of actual innocence.”
And here is the final reason why this case should garner coverage by columnists. In a particularly Chicago twist, attorneys for the men have filed a federal lawsuit seeking damages for their “wrongful conviction,” so that even though prosecutors and an outside law firm bolstered their guilt, the men are seeking millions through the courts.
And they might just get it. The city has settled on more absurd wrongful conviction cases.
All the more reason Kass owes his readers a more local perspective on immigration reform stories, ones like Solace and Reyes.