Man shot 25 times by police is released from jail
November 22, 2005 (WLS) -- A former Chicago police officer was released from jail Tuesday, nearly nine months after he was shot and critically wounded by police. Howard Morgan was shot 25 times. Police say he opened fire on them during a traffic stop back in February. Morgan disputes that claim.
Morgan is now speaking publicly for the first time about his ordeal.
What happened for Howard Morgan Tuesday was the second miracle in the past nine months. On February 21, he was shot 25 times during a confrontation with Chicago police officers on the city's West side.
Tuesday morning his wife posted the necessary 10-percent of the $2 million bond, with the vast majority of the $200,000 supplied by a mysterious, anonymous donor.
The 54-year-old Morgan, who was a railroad police officer and former Chicago cop, was still on crutches as he walked out of jail surrounded by his family. He refused to discuss detail of the incident last winter when, while off duty, he allegedly exchanged dozens of shots with four city officers who claimed they stopped Morgan for driving the wrong way down a one-way street.
Morgan was charged with attempted murder of police officers and in fact, two of the city cops received minor wounds. But Morgan clearly got the worst of it.
"I'm not supposed to be here, being shot 25 times throughout my whole body -- front, back, every spot except my head. It's only a miracle," Morgan said.
"An anonymous person said that my husband had suffered enough. And they came through with the money and said we've got to free him for Thanksgiving because we feel his life is threatened and we got to bring this man home," said Morgan's wife Rosalind.
"I'm ecstatic. I want to fall on my knees and praise and thank God. My family has stood behind me from the beginning with no doubt. It is unbelievable. You never understand how much a family means to you," Morgan said.
Morgan is likely to go on trial for the attempted murders of the police officers sometime next year. His wife set up a Howard Morgan defense fund. It raised just over $12,000. She says the anonymous donor supplied $187,000 to secure Howard Morgan's release.
He is going home to his family for Thanksgiving and Christmas and will be able to prepare for his trial at home with his family.
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