Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Thomas Frisbie  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction

Audience: Adult;


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Illinois Connection

Frisbie has a degree in political science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and currently resides in a Chicago suburb.

Biographical and Professional Information

Thomas Frisbie has been an award-winning longtime writer and editor for the Chicago Sun-Times since 1976. During this time, he has been an investigative reporter, copy editor, section editor, columnist, page designer, illustrator, news editor and nation/world editor. As a reporter covering the courts, he followed the Rolando Cruz case for many years. In 1998, he co-authored with Randy Garrett Victims of Justice, a book about the DuPage County case in which Rolando Cruz and Alejandro Hernandez were sentenced to death for the 1983 murder of Jeanine Nicarico only to be freed ten years later. An expanded and updated edition, Victims of Justice Revisited, was published by Northwestern University Press in 2005. Before joining the Sun-Times, Frisbie worked at Pioneer Press from 1974 to 1976.He has a degree in political science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and is a past-president of the Society of Midland Authors.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Victims of Justice (True Crime)
ISBN: 038079845X

Avon Books. 1998

Documents the political pressure, incompetence in handling evidence, and judicial duplicity that resulted in the wrongful conviction and imprisonment of two men for the murder of a Illinois woman, Jeanine Nicarico, in 1983, and the intervention of novelist Scott Turow. Original.

Victims of Justice Revisited: Completely Updated and Revised
ISBN: 0810122367

Northwestern University Press. 2005

Perhaps no legal case has done more to reshape America's debate over the death penalty than Illinois's prosecution and conviction of Rolando Cruz. This updated and significantly expanded edition of Victims of Justice tells the pivotal story of Cruz and his two co-defendants after the 1983 murder of ten-year-old Jeanine Nicarico of Naperville, Illinois. The book follows the story from the day the crime occurred to the groundbreaking trial of seven law officers accused of conspiring to deny Cruz a fair trial.

The kidnapping of Jeanine Nicarico from her quiet suburban home and her brutal slaying sparked a public demand for justice. But the longer authorities strove to execute Cruz and the two other men, the more evidence emerged that the defendants were innocent-and that the death penalty process in America itself was deeply flawed.

Here is the start of a chain reaction that led to a moratorium on the death penalty in Illinois and the clearing out of Death Row, as Illinois Governor George Ryan-worried about unfairness in death penalty convictions-granted clemency to all those awaiting execution. This is a detailed study of a nationally known case that should be cited whenever serious scholars examine how capital cases are prosecuted in America. Here is the most thorough investigation yet published into the background of the man who-after Cruz already was on Death Row-claimed to be the real killer.

Speaking Engagements

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