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Article updated: 2/19/2012 10:05 PM

Elgin man wants Certificate of Innocence

By Harry Hitzeman

Last year, an appellate court reversed a conviction and vacated a subsequent 15-year prison sentence for an Elgin man on charges of possession with intent to deliver more than a kilogram of cocaine.

Now that man, James E. Dumas, is taking things a step further.

The 39-year-old has filed court papers asking authorities to grant him a Certificate of Innocence for his case.

Dumas is due in court March 8 before Kane County Judge Timothy Sheldon, who was issued the case after Judge Allen Anderson recused himself.

In a bench trial in October 2009, Anderson convicted Dumas of possession of more than 900 grams of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, a felony that carried a top sentence of 30 years.

But an appellate court reversed the conviction.

Dumas met an undercover Elgin Police detective Sept. 24, 2008 in the parking lot of a store on Randall Road so the officer could sell Dumas a kilogram of cocaine for $26,000, according to police and court records.

Dumas and the officer sat in the officer's car and Dumas held a bag containing the kilogram for about 30 seconds, according to court documents.

Dumas said he was concerned about the quality of the cocaine and didn't have the money with him. Dumas wanted to drive to a house on Elgin's east side where his friend could see it first. The detective followed Dumas for a few blocks, but never met Dumas again.

No future drug deal took place, but Dumas was eventually arrested in January 2009.

According to state statute, a person wrongly convicted of a crime can apply for a Certificate of Innocence within two years of exoneration or reversal.

Because the appellate court reversed and vacated Dumas' conviction, the Kane County State's Attorney's Office cannot retry him.

Kane academy nears: Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez is accepting applications for his spring citizens police academy. Anyone who works or lives in Kane County is welcome to apply.

The academy will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. April 4 and run for 10 consecutive Wednesdays. For a copy of the application and more information about the academy, visit kanesheriff.com.


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