Prosecutors claim journalism students paid off a witness

  • Northwestern University professor David Protess, founder of the Medill Innocence Project, talks with journalism students at a reporting strategy session in Evanston.

    Northwestern University professor David Protess, founder of the Medill Innocence Project, talks with journalism students at a reporting strategy session in Evanston. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 11/10/2009 3:09 PM

Prosecutors in Chicago are claiming that Northwestern University journalism students paid two witnesses in an effort to prove a man was wrongly convicted.

The allegation came in a Cook County criminal court murder case Tuesday.

 

Students contend prosecutors put the wrong man behind bars for a 1978 murder. But prosecutors say students may have been motivated to find evidence of Anthony McKinney's innocence to get better grades and subpoenaed the students' grades.

Prosecutors claim the students paid $60 to a man who said he was present at the murder and that McKinney was not, and paid up to $100 to another possible suspect, who said he knew nothing about the murder.

Journalism professor David Protess denies the allegations.

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