Victims' Statements

The following testimony exemplifies police torture at Areas 2 and 3:

 Victim: Marcus Wiggins, age 13

Examination: What happened after he turned the switch?
Wiggins: He told me to put my hands on the table.
Q: And did you do that?
A: Yes.
Q: And then what happened?
A: And then he put the things on my hand.
Q: Was the box making a humming noise before he put the things on your hand?
A: Yes.
Q: And before putting the things on your hands did you say anything else to him or did he say anything else to you besides what you’ve told us about?
A: No.
Q: What happened when he put the things on your hands?
A: They started – my hands started burning, feeling like it was being burned. I was – I was shaking and my – and my jaws got tight and my eyes felt they went blank…It felt like I was spinning…It felt like my jaws was like – they was – I can’t say the word. It felt like my jaws was sucking in…I felt like I was going to die.

-- From the deposition of Marcus Wiggins, June 14, 1996, describing treatment received at Area 3, September, 1991. This testimony is taken from a civil lawsuit Marcus Wiggins filed against the City of Chicago, Jon Burge, John Byrne Anthony Maslanka, John Paladino, James O’Brien, and several other Area 3 detectives on January 13, 1993 in Wiggins v. Burge. In the lawsuit he alleged that he had been beaten and given electric shocks from various police officers at Area 3 on September 25, 1991, when he was 13 years old. He again testified to his beating and electric shocking at his deposition on June 4, 1996. At the time of his arrest in 1991, Jon Burge was Commander of Area 3.

Victim: Melvin Jones

Jones: He started plugging a little device that he had up…After he plugged it into the wall, he touched it to the radiator next to where I was handcuffed at.”
Examination: And what if anything happened then, when he touched it to the radiator?
J: A little spark came out of the radiator.
Q: Then what happened?
J: Then he told me, you know, that this what’s going to be used on me, and if I am ready to talk, and I told him no, I don’t know anything? …Then…He pulled my pants down to my ankles while I was in a standing position, and he’s sitting in front of me. He pulled my pants down to my ankles, you know, my shorts, everything, and he placed the electric device on my foot…First he touched the electrical device on my left foot, down on my foot, my left foot.
Q: Did he have occasion to put the electrical device on you again?
J: Yes, he did…he placed it on my penis.
Q: He placed it on your penis?
J: Yes.
Q: Now, after he put the electrical device on you, what if anything happened then?
J: Which time are you talking about?
Q: …What if anything happened after he placed the electrical device on you, or on your foot?
J: When he put it on my foot, I started hollering, I made a statement to him, “You ain’t supposed to be doing this to me.”
Q: And what happened then?
J: He told me that he ain’t got no proof, you know, to this, and that’s when he looked over to Officer Flood.
Q: When he looked at Officer Flood, did he say anything to Officer Flood?
J: Yes, he did.
Q: Did he say anything?
J: He said, “Do you see anything, Flood,” and Flood looked up at the ceiling and told him he didn’t see nothing.
Q: What happened if anything next?
J: What happened?
Q: Yes. What did Lieutenant Burge say?
J: Then he said, “You see, it’s just me and you,” you know. He says, “ No Court and no State are going to take your word against a Lieutenant’s word.”

-- From the testimony of Melvin Jones on August 5, 1982 in the People v. Melvin Jones. Melvin Jones was arrested on February 5, 1982 and held for four days in Area 2 Police custody. During this time he was subjected to electro-shock treatment by Chicago Police Detective John Burge and other officers in their attempts to gain a confession out of him.  

Victim: Andrew Wilson

Examination: What happened then after you were taken into the room?
Andrew Wilson: Told me I was going to make a statement.
Q: Who told you that?
A: Burge.
Q: All right, what happened after he told you that you were going to make a statement?
A: Told me his reputation was at stake.
Q: Did anyone else come into that room?
A: Yucaitis came back later.
Q: …Did Yucaitis have anything with him?
A: A brown paper bag…[with a] little box…It was black or blue, I mean black for sure, had wires on it and a crank.
Q: …What did he do with the wires?
A: Stuck one in my nose and he stuck one on my ears.
Q: …Then what happened?
A: He shocked me…He shocked me again. I was hollering. They called him out of the room so he put the bag up. they left. They came back – no, they put the bag up. Then they came back and told me I was going to make a statement. Then he took me to see the State’s Attorney, the one that said he didn’t see me, having seen me. He didn’t see me…I told him you want me to make a statement after you all then tortured me, torturing me.
[Wilson is taken back into the room to be shocked again, but as they try to shock him he keeps knocking the device off the table. ]
A: …So they got tired of me knocking it off so he handcuffed one of the cuffs and stretched me across the heater. They stretched me across to the other ring on the wall…My chest and my legs [were up against the radiator.]
Q: …And what happened after they stretched you across the radiator? Did they shock you again?
A: (No response.)
Q: Can you recall?
A: (No response.)
Q: Can you tell us what happened then?
A: I want to leave.
Q: …Did you voluntarily give up your right to remain silent?
A: No.
Q: Why did you make a statement?
A: Because they were beating me and shocking me. All I thought if I wouldn’t do it they would do it some more.

-- From the testimony of Andrew Wilson in People vs. Andrew Wilson and Jackie Wilson, November 12, 1982. Arrested on February 14, 1982, just nine days after Melvin Jones, Andrew Wilson was brought into Area 2 where he was repeatedly tortured with electric-shock to the genitals, suffocation, and burning on a hot radiator by Burge and policemen under his supervision. Please see the January 22, 1992 Memorandum in Opposition filed by the Chicago Police Board for more evidence of torture in this case.