Thursday, December 22, 2016

Good Cop Speaks Out Against Drug War, Blows Whistle on Chief

What do a wrongfully convicted baby killer, the mysterious death of a police officer, and the resignation of nearly 20 cops all have in common? Answer: Round Lake Park, Illinois Police Chief George Filenko.
Saturday’s airing of CBS’ 48 Hours, documented the plight of Melissa Calusinski. She was a daycare worker convicted in 2011 of killing toddler Ben Kingan who died in 2009 after suffering a fatal brain hemorrhage while at the daycare. Filenko interrogated Calusinski for a reported 9 hours before she says she gave up, gave in, and offered a false confession, recanting her previous 70 claims of innocence.
She’s been fighting for her freedom ever since. She told 48 Hours she only made up the confession so the whole ordeal would be over and the aggressive man (Filenko) would leave her alone. “They were just continuously not believing me,” she said adding, “I was just ready to get away from these men.”
Despite the fact that little Ben had fallen a few months prior, that his head began to swell from average size to an encephalic above average size over the course of just a few weeks (indicating brain swelling), and that he had a habit of sleeping irregularly and banging his own head, Calusinski was considered the prime suspect in his death. Three pathologists, including the one whose report helped get Calusinski convicted, all concluded, upon further review, there had indeed been a significant previous brain injury prior to the days leading up to his death. The acknowledgment of a previous injury was overlooked in Calusinski’s murder trial. Nonetheless, to date, Calusinski, whom many believe to be an innocent victim of a brutal interrogation leading up to a false confession, sits behind bars, unable to get a new trial. Hers may be yet another instance in Lake County of a wrongful conviction which has led an innocent woman behind bars.