Thomas Sierra Exonerated After 22-year Wrongful Imprisonment

Charges Dropped in Latest Case Tied to CPD Det. Guevara

January 9, 2018: The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office dropped all charges against Thomas Sierra for a 1995 murder, the latest case investigated by former Chicago Detective Reynaldo Guevara to unravel. Sierra spent 22 years in prison, always maintaining his innocence.

Sierra’s conviction was based entirely on two eyewitness identifications fabricated by Detective Guevara. At Sierra’s criminal trial nearly two decades ago, one of the eyewitnesses admitted that Detective Guevara told him to identify Sierra. Both of the witnesses have testified that they could not have identified Andujar’s killer.

When asked in recent court proceedings whether he had framed Sierra, Detective Guevara invoked his Fifth Amendment right to remain silent.

Sierra’s case marks the tenth conviction that has been thrown out based on Detective Guevara’s misconduct. Just last month, the convictions of Gabriel Solache and Arturo De-Leon Reyes were dismissed after a Chicago criminal judge accused Detective Guevara of “bald-faced lies” and ruled that Detective Guevara had “eliminated the possibility of being considered a credible witness in any proceeding.”

Attorneys Joshua Tepfer, Anand Swaminathan, and Steven Art of the Exoneration Project represent Sierra. They issued the following statement: “We are grateful to Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx for promptly re-investigating this miscarriage of justice, and giving Thomas the long-overdue vindication that he so richly deserves. Ms. Foxx’s administration has shown yet again that good government should be committed to rooting out corruption and correcting injustices.”