Cook County News

Ex-Cook Sheriff's deputy loses bid to use Merit Board controversy to boost lawsuit over termination

By Cook County Record | Sep 18, 2018

A federal judge has taken down a fired Cook County Sheriff's deputy's attempt to use controversy surrounding the sheriff's Merit Board to keep alive his lawsuit over his termination.

Court-appointed federal monitor: Oversight of Cook County hiring practices no longer needed

By Dan Churney | Sep 4, 2018

A court-appointed monitor of Cook County patronage is asking a federal judge to release her from her oversight duties, saying she believes the county’s government has undergone “profound transformation” in its employment practices and has a culture in place to keep politics from unduly influencing who gets county jobs and who doesn’t.

Cook County judge: County's guns, ammo tax an 'inconsequential burden,' doesn't violate constitutions

By Scott Holland | Aug 27, 2018

A Cook County judge has ruled the county’s guns and ammunition tax doesn’t violate the Constitution or the rights of firearm owners, saying the tax is little more than an “inconsequential burden” on gun owners.

Mandatory e-filing in place in all but three counties in Illinois, Cook live this month

By John Breslin | Jul 18, 2018

Mandatory court e-filing for all civil cases is operational in all but three Illinois counties, according to a representative of the company charged with introducing the system.

Loyola lawsuit: Cook sheriff refused to remove inmate for 4 months; makes hospital 'prison infirmary'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 12, 2018

Loyola University Medical Center has filed suit against the Cook County Sheriff, saying the sheriff’s office’s apparent refusal to retrieve an inmate who has been kept under guard at the hospital since April has turned the hospital essentially into an unwilling auxiliary of the Cook County Jail.

Cook County, road builders tussle over home rule, control of county's 'transportation' money

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jun 13, 2018

With about a quarter of a billion dollars on the line in what the county calls a “test case” that could affect cities and counties across Illinois, Cook County has squared off in court against a coalition of trade groups representing road builders, as the two sides have asked a judge to decide whether a new Illinois state constitutional amendment negates the county’s authority to decide how to apportion its transportation tax dollars.

Judge: 'Harm to minority borrowers direct;' Cook County can continue predatory lending suit vs HSBC

By Dan Churney | Jun 5, 2018

A Chicago federal judge has eliminated several claims from a suit brought by Cook County against banking giant HSBC, for alleged predatory lending, but the judge said the county still made enough plausible allegations, including that HSBC discriminated against minorities, for the suit to survive.

Cook County Board approves tax incentives for industrial development in select areas of the county

By Justin Stoltzfus | May 25, 2018

The Cook County Board of Commissioners has officially put its stamp of approval on four proposals from the county’s Bureau of Economic Development that would grant tax incentives to select local businesses.

Facebook: Cook County data mining lawsuit designed to benefit only county government, its hired lawyers

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 10, 2018

Saying only the county and its hired trial lawyers would stand to benefit from any settlement or judgment, Facebook has pushed back against the Cook County State’s Attorney’s attempt to send back to more friendly legal turf the pending legal fight over how much blame Facebook should shoulder for data mining conducted by another firm, ostensibly to benefit the 2016 election campaign of President Donald Trump.

Class action suit says drug companies caused opioid crisis, heightened insurance costs

By Dan Churney | May 7, 2018

A Chicago class-action lawyer has filed a 97-page lawsuit in Chicago federal court against 13 drug companies and distributors, on behalf of a woman who alleges the companies promoted opioid use, knowing such painkillers were dangerously addictive, jacking up people's health insurance costs.

Former state's attorney Alvarez threatens ex-Springfield reporter, current state's attorney with defamation suit

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 3, 2018

Cook County former top prosecutor Anita Alvarez has threatened to sue prominent Illinois journalist Kerry Lester and Kim Foxx, who succeeded Alvarez as Cook County State’s Attorney, unless Lester agrees to retract statements attributed to Foxx in Lester’s new book on sexual harassment in Illinois politics, in which Foxx claims Alvarez failed to act to stop ongoing sexual harassment within her office because the alleged harasser was a friend.

Cook County Assessor sues board of ethics over campaign contribution fines

By Noddy A. Fernandez | May 1, 2018

While his days in office are numbered after losing in the Democratic primary election in March, Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios is suing the Cook County Board of Ethics and board members Peggy Daley, David Grossman, Thomas Szromba, Juliet Sorensen and Von Matthews for allegedly fining him for certain contributions that were made to his unsuccessful re-election campaign.

Sheriff seeks to throw out officers' Cook County court suit over Merit Board's makeup, says Board is now legit

By Dan Churney | May 1, 2018

Even as he seeks to dismiss a similar case in Chicago's federal court, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart is also aiming to pop a lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court in which seven sheriff's officers have asked for their disciplinary cases to be tossed because the sheriff's disciplinary board was improperly seated. The sheriff contends the board is now properly constituted and at any rate, the previously improper panel never disciplined the officers, much less even heard the officer's cases, he has asserted.

Cook County says suit vs Facebook on behalf of entire state of IL, so suit belongs in Cook courts

By Dan Churney | Apr 23, 2018

Cook County wants its lawsuit accusing Facebook of allowing user data to be mined by data firm Cambridge Analytica to aid President Donald Trump's election campaign, returned to Cook County court from federal court, where Facebook transferred it, arguing state court is the proper venue, because the suit is not just on behalf of the county, but everyone in Illinois.

Contract: Edelson to get 20 percent of Cook Co's take from suit vs Facebook; Facebook requests pause

By Jonathan Bilyk | Apr 18, 2018

Facebook has asked a Chicago federal judge to place on hold a lawsuit brought by Cook County and its trial lawyers, who stand to claim 20 percent of whatever the county may receive from the legal action over accusations the social media company improperly allowed data firm Cambridge Analytica to harvest information on about 50 million Facebook users to aid the 2016 election campaign of President Donald Trump.

Judge turns aside parents' attempts to sue those trying to take custody of kids after daughter's death

By Tomas Kassahun | Apr 17, 2018

A federal judge has ruled against a couple who filed a lawsuit against healthcare professionals and state officials who attempted to take their surviving children from them following the death of their daughter.

Ex-Cook County administrator again sues county, Preckwinkle and Silvestri, alleging retaliatory firing

By Dan Churney | Apr 16, 2018

A former Cook County staffer, who last month lost a federal suit in which he alleged he was fired in retaliation for exposing corruption in Elmwood Park and then running for the county board seat held by Elmwood Park's onetime Village President Peter Silvestri, is now attempting to press the same claims in Cook County Circuit Court.

Judge again sinks Brunswick's bid to undo $25M deal with lawyer who used jury note to avoid loss at trial

By Jonathan Bilyk | Apr 11, 2018

A Chicago federal judge has again turned aside an attempt by boatmaker Brunswick to undo a $25 million personal injury settlement the company says was obtained through fraud, as a federal judge said the company has failed again to lay claim to a protected interest violated by a rival lawyer’s decision to allegedly withhold information about a jury note moments before a verdict would have delivered a win to Brunswick.

Cook County 'use tax' revenue soars; county partners with collector, local lawyers to track down unpaid taxes

By Jonathan Bilyk | Apr 9, 2018

Cook County residents who have bought a car in recent years may need to begin watching their mail for an envelope from Cook County, demanding perhaps hundreds of dollars under a county tax, thanks to an ongoing, little-heralded arrangement with a debt collector and local law firm deputized to act as county attorneys.

Appeals panel: Fired worker's 'last chance agreement' lets Cook County sidestep arbitration over termination

By Scott Holland | Apr 6, 2018

A labor grievance against Cook County won’t avoid its day in court after a state appeals panel said a “Last Chance Agreement” between the county and a fired worker allows the county to sidestep a union collective bargaining agreement, and thus nixes the union’s attempt to send the matter to arbitration.

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