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UIS to host presentation by officer who investigated Steidl case

March 9, 2007

Contact: Evan Wilson, 217/220-1719, ewils3@uis.edu
or John Hanlon, jhanl1@uis.edu

SPRINGFIELD -- Michale Callahan, the Illinois State Police officer whose investigation into the case of Randy Steidl led to a lawsuit against state police officials, will speak on "Demoted for Pursuing the Truth" beginning at 6 p.m. Monday, March 19, in University Hall room 2034, on campus at the University of Illinois at Springfield.

The program is free and open to the public and is presented by the Downstate Illinois Innocence Project and the Institute for Legal and Policy Studies at UIS.

In 1987, Steidl was convicted of the murder of Dyke and Karen Rhoads and sentenced to death. However, a subsequent investigation led by Bill Clutter, now Illinois Innocence Project director of investigations, developed forensic evidence that disproved a key prosecution witness's description of the crime scene. In March 2000, Callahan, at the time a lieutenant with the Illinois State Police, was assigned to review evidence provided by Clutter, and his review of the case file led him to conclude that Steidl and a co-defendant had been framed. Callahan's investigation was hindered for political reasons, and he later successfully sued ISP officials. Steidl was released from prison in May 2004. Callahan is now retired.

In this presentation, Callahan and members of Steidl's defense will speak about the case.

UIS' Downstate Illinois Innocence Project is housed within the Institute for Legal and Policy Studies. Under its auspices, students in Legal Studies and other degree programs provide research and investigative assistance to attorneys who are helping individuals who have been arrested, tried, found guilty, and imprisoned for crimes that the Project believes they did not commit.

More information about the Downstate Innocence Project is available at http://cspl.uis.edu/ILAPS/DownstateInnocenceProject/. For further information about Callahan's presentation, contact Evan Jean Wilson by phone at 220-1719 or by e-mail at ewils3@uis.edu, or John Hanlon at jhanl2@uis.edu.



The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 42 degree programs: 21 bachelorís, 20 masterís, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.

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Downstate Illinois Innocence Project

More about Michale Callahan's investigation and lawsuit

More about the Rhoads murder case


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