Trials scheduled for deputy auditors; auditor herself still barred from her office

Trials scheduled for deputy auditors; auditor herself still barred from her office

LaSalle County State’s Attorney Karen Donnelly and First Assistant State’s Attorney George Mueller will stay involved as prosecutors in the overtime pay theft case against two deputy auditors. Defense lawyer Todd Martin says as strange as the case is, he wants Donnelly and Mueller prosecuting Tori Artman and Pamela Wright. They’re charged with approving about $3,000 in overtime pay they didn’t work for. Judge Cynthia Raccuglia set a June 3 trial date for Artman and July 8 for Wright.

Martin believes the County Board has no authority to suspend his clients’ pay. He intends to pursue a case in court.

But the first repercussion may have been Salary and Labor Committee Chairman Joe Savitch resigning from the committee. Board Chairman Jim Olson had little more to say about it Monday than a replacement will be named.

Savitch himself is saying less. We weren’t able to reach him for comment.

On another front: one judge, aware that another judge will have more to say about it, says he doesn’t want to interfere. So for now, LaSalle County Auditor Jody Wilkinson isn’t being allowed in her office. The County Board barred her late last year when an overtime pay theft case started coming together against Wilkinson and two deputy auditors.

Jansz, agreed Monday on a temporary basis with a State’s Attorney’s Office request, to make staying out of her office a condition of Wilkinson’s bond. First Assistant State’s Attorney George Mueller, claiming Wilkinson is intimidating, says there’s a payroll clerk ready to quit if she returns. Wilkinson’s lawyer, Joe Navarro, objected to Mueller’s characterization and said people make their own decisions to quit.

Wilkinson has her own request to return not currently assigned a judge.