Monday, June 25, 2012

Innocence Project asks governor for clemency in Northern Illinois case

Supporters of a Bartlett woman convicted in 1999 of shaking a baby to death gathered in front of the Illinois Capitol Saturday morning to ask Gov. Pat Quinn to review her case and grant her clemency.

Former day care worker Pamela Jacobazzi's backers say new science around shaken baby syndrome and evidence not presented at her first trial point to her innocence. She's being helped by the Illinois Innocence Project, based at the University of Illinois Springfield.

“The theory that she was convicted with has been discredited since then,” said Jacobazzi attorney Anthony Sassan.

In 1999, a jury found Jacobazzi guilty of first-degree murder in the 1995 death of 2-year-old Matthew Czapski. She was charged with shaking the child in August of 1994, and he remained in a coma until 1995, when he died.

Now, though, supporters say that jury was never told about evidence that the child had medical conditions that could have been mistaken as shaken baby syndrome. In addition to asking Quinn for clemency, a hearing in Jacobazzi's case is scheduled for November, where her attorneys hope to get a new trial.

The case was featured in a June 24, 2012, article in the Chicago Daily Herald.

Read the article online