Yesterday in Non-Sequiturs, I mentioned that a bit of a turf war seems to be developing between the Cook County judges and the Sheriff over new security procedures in the courthouse parking lot. Apparently the judges don’t like having to show their identification and open their trunks every time they drive to and from work. Such pre-9/11 thinking.

I quipped that the judges needed to not throw a public fit about it, even though the complaints described in the article sounded reasonable. For example: “’Why are you checking [trunks] in the morning? Am I bringing in someone to escape?’” one judge said in an interview, asking not to be quoted by name.”

Yes, that does sound like an unnecessary check. Other judges made dumber, self-entitled complaints about all the security being an invasion of privacy, even though those same judges raised no complaint over the Proles who submit to those invasions to get to court.

Well, it turns out a faithful reader managed to get ahold of an audio recording of one of the judges calling 911 because the deputies wouldn’t let him out of the parking lot without checking his ID….

This whole affair is apparently a mounting turf war between Chief Judge Timothy Evans and Sheriff Tom Dart over who really decides who gets to be in the Cook County jail (spoiler alert: it should be the judges). The judges claim the new security features at the courthouse are basically Sheriff Dart tweaking them. You know how it is: they issue a judicial order, you ignore them, they try and sanction you over it, you make them go through a mildly inconvenient cursory security check. That’s the Chicago way.

Associate Cook County Judge Stanley Sacks did not want to show the deputies his identification to leave the parking lot. They told him that their procedure required an ID check. In the panoply of security measures in this affair, this seems like one of the good ones. It makes sense to know who’s going in and out of the courthouse.

So Sacks responded by showing his ID and resolving to raise the matter with the higher-ups at the Sheriff’s Department later calling 911 and demanding that the Chicago Police come down and force the deputies to let him go because he was being “unlawfully restrained.”

And here’s the audio:

This is not the first curious outburst for Judge Sacks. Back in 2004, Judge Sacks was pulled from the bench and sent to anger management counseling for dropping F-bombs over what he saw as a shoddy police investigation. Reading the details of that case, I’m siding with Judge Sacks on that one. Tipsters say that Judge Sacks is a fair and eminently qualified jurist who just constantly hates on everyone in front of him.

After the 911 call, the deputies let Judge Sacks go rather than trouble with the Chicago Police, even though they no doubt had nothing better to do in the murder capital of the country than help a judge get out of parking lot security stop. It’s about priorities, man!

Cook County judges fume over security checks at courthouse [Chicago Sun-Times]

Earlier: Non-Sequiturs: 09.18.13


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