Welcome to the Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission
The State of Illinois and Governor Pat Quinn are committed to fairly and impartially investigating a claim by any person who alleges that he or she has been tortured into making a false confession, and that the confession was used to obtain a conviction for that crime.
This website will give you information about our mission to provide a neutral forum to investigate and determine the credibility of such claims, and to facilitate appropriate judicial relief in those cases where the claim is found to be credible.
We strive to provide professional, competent, and considerate service to everyone who seeks information from us or who has a claim pending before the Commission, as well as to those who are victims of the crimes involved in the claims.
Please let us know if we may be of assistance to you.
The Illinois Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission Act establishes an extraordinary procedure to investigate and determine factual claims of torture. That procedure is set forth in greater detail in the Commission’s Rules.
The Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission is an independent Commission operating under the Illinois Human Rights Commission for administrative purposes.
The Commission has the following duties and powers:
- To establish the criteria and screening process to determine which cases shall be accepted for review;
- To conduct investigations into claims of torture, with priority to be given to those cases in which the convicted person is currently incarcerated solely for the crime to which the person claims torture by Jon Burge or officers under his command, or both;
- To coordinate the investigation of cases accepted for review;
- To notify the victim of the crime of which the claimant has been convicted (or the next of kin if the victim is deceased) of the nature of the investigation process if one is undertaken, of the right to present to the Commission his or her views and concerns throughout the course of the investigation, and of the right to attend certain Commission proceedings otherwise closed to the public, such as proceedings before the Commission at which evidence is received;
- To maintain records for all case investigations; and
- To prepare written reports outlining Commission investigations and recommendations to the trial court at the completion of each investigation.
The Commission consists of eight voting members. A quorum of Commissioners was appointed in 2010. The Commission then began the search for an Executive Director, who was hired effective February 1, 2011. Since that time, additional staff has been hired.
After the Executive Director was hired, the Commission immediately began the process of drafting its Rules, filing those Rules for publication and public comment, and securing the approval of the committee established to review proposed rules on behalf of the General Assembly.
The Commission began receiving claims during April, 2011. A claim may be filed with the Commission by any court, person or agency, and may be filed any time before August, 2014.
The Commission meets regularly. All meetings are conducted in compliance with the Open Meetings Act. There is a period of time reserved for public comment at each meeting. Agendas for future meetings are posted at least 48 hours before the meetings.