Convicted cop killer testifies at hearing he was tortured by Jon Burge and others into confessing

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A convicted cop killer took the stand Tuesday in a hearing to determine whether he can be re-tried in the 1982 killings of two Chicago police officers. (WLS)

A convicted cop killer took the stand Tuesday in a hearing to determine whether he can be re-tried in the 1982 killings of two Chicago police officers.

He was not in court, but the specter of disgraced former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge loomed large as a now 57-year-old Jackie Wilson took to the stand in a continuing hearing that will determine whether Wilson, convicted in the 1982 murder of two police officers can be retried. Wilson, who was arrested along with his brother Andrew, in connection with the murders, says his confession was coerced and that Burge, along with three others, tortured him.

"Anytime I didn't answer their questions, told them I didn't know anything about it," said Wilson, "they continued doing what they wanted to do."

Tuesday's hearing, continued from December 27, showed Wilson, being questioned by Special Prosecutor Michael O'Rourke, increasingly agitated as he recounted his interrogation, which included Sgt. Thomas McKenna and Detective Patrick O'Hara, as well as Burge.

"They beat me over the head with dictionaries (phone books). Stuffed a gun in my mouth and then hit me with electric shocks," interrupted Wilson, as O'Rourke questioned him, then apologized to the judge "It's upsetting Judge. I'm sorry. But it's upsetting. I'm reliving it."

At the time of his arrest and confession, Wilson admitted to being with his brother when Andrew Wilson shot and killed Richard O'Brien and William Fahey. He now says he only said that out of fear he would be killed.

O'Rourke, who is a private attorney hired by Cook County to deal with cases related to the Jon Burge era, admits to Burge's and others' wrongdoing in other cases, but denies that Wilson's confession was coerced

Wilson's hearing is expected to be continued until the spring at which time a judge will issue his decision.

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