Last member of 'Marquette Park 4' released from prison after charges dropped

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A man who has spent more than 20 years in prison in a double murder case walked free Friday after he was wrongly convicted.

Troshawn McCoy, one of the so-called "Marquette Park Four," was released by the Illinois Department of Corrections and arrived at a Greyhound Station in Chicago early Friday morning, where he reunited with his mother. ABC7 spoke exclusively with McCoy as he arrived back in Chicago.

"It was amazing...amazing, I'm just speechless right now. I thought this day would never come it's overwhelming," McCoy said.

McCoy is the last of four men known as the "Marquette Park Four" to get out of prison.

On Wednesday, the Cook County state's attorney dropped all charges against the men who confessed to participating in a double murder at a car dealership on the Southwest Side back in 1995.

All four were teenagers at the time of the killings and said were coerced into making false confessions.

Investigators reopened the case and found new fingerprint evidence at the crime scene that exonerated them.

McCoy said the decades of incarceration as unbearable.

"I had to grow up real fast. I was in a place where you got killers I had to man up real fast. They didn't care that I was a kid," he said.

This week, three of the four men were in court when their convictions were formally dismissed by a Cook County judge. They celebrated and thanked their legal teams who have worked tirelessly over the years. Collectively, the men spent over 70 years in prison, and now McCoy is enjoying his freedom.

"I knew from the very beginning he was innocent. I knew where he was and I couldn't convince people and I never stopped trying and I knew that God was going to do it because you have to have faith," said Collette McCoy Douglas, McCoy's mother.
McCoy's attorney Jon Erikson plans to file for a certificate of innocence, and then he plans to sue the Chicago Police Department and the detective who was involved in obtaining the confessions.

"This level of tragedy doesn't happen on his own, it happened by the coordinated efforts of a corrupt police department and an overzealous and unethical prosecutor's office and judges willing to look the other way," Erickson said.

McCoy said he wants to be a businessman and work in real estate, but he does not plan to stay in Chicago. He said there are too many bad memories here.
Copyright © 2019 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.