State police examine sexual misconduct allegations towards ex-state rep, execute search warrant at Mike Madigan’s Capitol places of work


Illinois State Police executed a search warrant Wednesday at Illinois Home Speaker Mike Madigan’s Capitol places of work as they examine allegations of wrongdoing, together with sexual misconduct and stalking, towards Jack Franks, a former state consultant who now serves as McHenry County Board chairman.

Illinois State Police received information from Madigan’s places of work on Wednesday afternoon, the identical day Gov. J.B. Pritzker delivered his State of the State deal with in a packed Capitol.

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The search warrant — obtained by the Chicago Solar-Instances through a Freedom of Info Act request — says Illinois State Police justified the search as a result of “possible trigger exists for the crimes of felony sexual abuse, felony sexual assault, official misconduct, stalking and aggravated battery.”

Police requested personnel, human assets or different information “containing data associated to allegations of wrongdoing or misconduct by former Illinois State Consultant Jack D. Franks.”

It additionally requested for “stories or complaints associated to sexual misconduct, harassment, stalking or different misconduct by Franks.”

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Illinois State Police declined to remark. Franks has not been charged and denies any wrongdoing.

Franks instructed the Solar-Instances on Friday he was unaware of the search warrant and has not been notified by “anybody about any matter.”

Franks, a Democrat from Marengo, served within the Illinois Home from 1999 to 2017. He was elected McHenry County Board chairman in 2016.

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The speaker’s workplace on Friday stated a criticism was first obtained about alleged sexual harassment involving an worker of the speaker’s workplace and a former state consultant on Nov. 19, 2018. Madigan and his chief of employees had been notified, and an investigation started.

Primarily based on the allegations, Madigan instructed his chief counsel to inform Franks that he confronted varied restrictions, together with a prohibition towards any contact with staff in his workplace.

The speaker’s workplace additionally spoke to the sufferer to see if she was in peril or wanted any lodging. She requested confidentiality and initially didn’t take part within the investigation, the workplace stated. The girl in the end offered data, the speaker’s workplace stated.

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In February 2019, the speaker’s workplace decided the harassment allegations had been “credible,” and the speaker requested Illinois Secretary of State Police to ban Franks from coming into the Capitol with out an escort, the speaker’s workplace stated.

A month later, the speaker’s workplace stated they obtained much more details about the allegations, which elevated in severity, and primarily based on that, the workplace known as varied regulation enforcement businesses to report “doable felony conduct.”

The allegations date again to 2016, in keeping with the speaker’s workplace. When the preliminary criticism was obtained, a number of speaker’s workplace staffers stated they witnessed Franks and the alleged sufferer talking privately, a dialog that left her shaken “to the core.” That was reported to senior employees on the speaker’s workplace.

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Madigan himself known as the Sangamon County State’s lawyer to say his workplace had details about doable felony conduct and would totally cooperate, in keeping with the speaker’s workplace. Madigan’s employees later met with regulation enforcement to supply data.

The sufferer met with State Police, and the speaker’s workplace additionally knowledgeable Legislative Inspector Normal Carol Pope and Maggie Hickey, the previous inspector basic who was employed by Madigan to conduct an unbiased investigation into the speaker’s workplace in 2018.

State Police requested information on Jan. 24. Three days later, Madigan’s lawyer reached out to debate protocol for submitting the paperwork. The speaker’s workplace stated they tried to name the state’s lawyer’s workplace for 2 days earlier this week however received no response.

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Then got here the search warrant, which state police executed Wednesday.

In a press release, Madigan stated his workplace instantly took steps to guard the alleged sufferer and performed an investigation after receiving the report of “alleged sexual harassment.”

“Primarily based on data obtained throughout the investigation and subsequent to it, my workplace knowledgeable the suitable authorities of the allegations and the investigation, together with the Sangamon County State’s Lawyer, the Secretary of State Capitol Police, and the Illinois State Police for additional overview and motion,” Madigan stated within the assertion. “I stay dedicated to working to guard the sufferer and can see this matter to its conclusion in an effort to make sure the sufferer’s security.”

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State police had been in search of personnel, human assets or different information with details about allegations of wrongdoing by Franks in addition to names and get in touch with data of all prior legislative assistants assigned to Franks.

It additionally requested stories or complaints about sexual misconduct, harassment or stalking “by Franks,” and for any “full inside investigation of any complaints” towards Franks.

Franks instructed the Solar-Instances he issued a “full denial” to the speaker’s workplace final yr.

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“In April of 2019, I obtained correspondence from the speaker’s workplace, which I rapidly responded to with a full denial,” Franks stated. “Since then, I’ve heard nothing from the speaker’s workplace concerning the matter, and I do know nothing a few search warrant. I haven’t been contacted about anybody about any matter, aside from that letter 9 months in the past.”