Dean Cage once said, "If you believe something, fight for it. These words came hours after a hard 41 years was released from prison more than a year after serving more than 12 years in a rape he did not commit. In 1996 he was convicted and sentenced 40 years in prison for the rape of a 15-year-old girl, who at the time, for him, as his attacker. Cage, but always maintained his innocence and asked for DNA tests to prove it. He said the family has even tried to pay for it yourself.
Cage, who worked at a Chicago supermarket, said he was home at the time the teenager said she was attacked while walking to school in November 1994. The teenager gave a composite drawing description to authorities and after it was circulated police brought Cage in as a suspect. The girl identified him as her attacker. Cage was also accused in the rape of a 29-year-old woman, but acquitted of those charges. Evidence at the time discounted Cage as the attacker, Neufeld said. Finally after years of legal work and a long sought after DNA test, Cage's conviction was overturned. The Innocence Project said nationally Cage is now the 217th person exonerated by post-conviction DNA evidence. He is the 29th Illinoisan to be exonerated by DNA evidence. Only Texas, with 31, has more DNA exoneration cases than Illinois.
Dressed in baggy jeans and white shirt, Cage told reporters that he received in 2008 through the hardest times in prison, with the support of his family, reading novels, playing basketball and faith. While in prison, Cage missed a three young boys growing up, both the grandparents' funerals and the 12 operations, his mother was thyroid and heart disorders.