Chicago-area man free on bail, gets new trial in arson case

Updated 5/31/2017 9:36 AM

WHEATON, Ill. -- William Amor has walked out of a suburban Chicago prison after a judge vacated his 1997 conviction on charges of arson and murder in his mother-in-law's death.

Amor, 60, of Naperville, spent the last 22 years behind bars after he was arrested in 1995 accused of intentionally igniting the 1995 Naperville fire that killed Marianne Miceli. But DuPage County Judge Liam Brennan in early April vacated Amor's conviction after considering new advances in fire science.


Amor originally was sentenced to 45 years in prison. He was set to be paroled in March after serving half of his sentence. On Tuesday he left the DuPage County jail after paying about $10,000 to make bail. He wore civilian clothing with sunglasses on his head. He said he hasn't slept much recently.

"I haven't done much of anything but wait for this moment," Amor said. "It's not something you can really prepare for. I'm overwhelmed. I'm thankful for everything."

Amor's new trial date is Sept. 12. He is represented by the University of Illinois-Springfield's Illinois Innocence Project. Lauren Kaeseberg, legal director of the group's Chicago office, said they believe the fire was an accident and he should have never been charged.

"We are ecstatic to be here today looking up at the clouds and breathing the fresh air with Bill," she said Tuesday. "It's really great."

Amor's attorneys have filed a motion requesting all charges against him be dismissed citing lack of evidence. That and other pretrial motions are scheduled to be addressed at a hearing June 9.

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