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Questions that should be answered in view of Booker’s public hearing

One of the charges lodged against Sgt. Aaron Booker, was a violation of a sexual harassment policy. Even though Booker was found not to be in violation of that policy, sexual harassment is obviously a violation that reaches the level of a public hearing.

Where are the public hearings, prosecuted by the states attorney’s office, during the years of 2005 – 2008, when a clear case of sexual harassment, involving more than 100 sexually explicit emails, made the rounds among some of the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department staff?

According to reports  in the Rockford Register Star, the emails were sent by employees on county time using county resources. Sheriff Meyer also admitted to the editorial board that the emails were sexual harassment. Then, why the double standard?

When was the last public hearing before the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Merit Commission for a violation of department policies by a member of the staff in the Sheriff’s Department? The emails were a clear violation of the sexual harassment policy, yet resulted in no public hearing, because no complaint was formally filed? That’s the reason for having a policy, so administrative action takes place regardless of a formal complaint.

This hearing involved four days of testimony and 27 witnesses. What was the cost in time and effort to the county to pursue this public process? Why wasn’t this simply handled as a personnel issue in closed session, like legal and contractural issues, in deference to an employee who had received above average performance reviews, in view of the allegations he faced in the public hearing?

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10 Comments

  1. You’re too polite to answer your own questions Ted so I’ll do it for you. The timing of the charges and the decision to hold a public hearing were orchestrated to damage Aaron Booker’s election chances. Plain and simple. Was Booker deserving of some punishment for his actions as 911 supervisor? Probably. Did those actions equal a violation of the sexual harassment policy? Not even close. So I need someone to tell me why Booker gets suspended for 90 days without pay while the violators of the sexual harassment policy get off with a private warning.

  2. crazyjoedevola

    The Sheriff really blew it being so obvious with his destruction plans of Booker. I will vote for Booker and hope Boss Hog gets put out to pasture.

  3. Ted Biondo

    Welcome to the blog CrazyJoe!

  4. I sat in on a good part of those hearings. Anyone wanting to read some real coverage (not the pap put out by the RRedStar, take a lookie…

    http://tempestinateaparty.blogspot.com

  5. Character assassination attempt backfire. Blown up in the face of the powers that be, for now.

    Vote for Booker! Praying to God that we get some positive change.

  6. Honestly, those emails are only the tip of the iceberg. How about the female Seargent, who after more than 15 years of exemplinary service and job reviews, was demoted to the nightshift the day after she expressed her oposition to the Sheriff about his decision to promote one of his buddys, shortly after the man beat his wife up so badly that she ended up in the hospital for several days. Retribution in that department is swift and severe. The deputys know of so many unethical actions taken by the Sheriff and his Good Old Boy club, but they are gagged.

  7. Ted Biondo

    Welcome to the blog Tracy, Bradley and Joan.

  8. I saw the debate between the Sheriff and Aaron Booker Thursday night in Rockton organized by the Northern Il Tea Party. Aaron was polite and a gentleman as was the Sheriff, however, the Sheriff was getting frustrated. Shame on him for being arrogant, corrupt, and just a “big bully”. He looks down on the people in Winn County and wants to be able to pass down his throne to his son. Been like this for years. Vote for Aaron and let’s take this county back.

  9. Wow, finally someone at the RRS asking the questions that we all want answers to. I’m afraid your voice is too singular and a little too late to save the RRSs reputation, at least with respect to this story. I wish you could have pressed LGC to ask these questions to Meyers himself. Anyway, thanks for the effort.

  10. Ted Biondo

    Welcome to the blog, Don. LGC asked me to do this blog. I think the RRS wishes to be “fair and balanced” as pundits say, and I will do my best to help that philosophy.

    I think the editorial board is looking at issues with a broader view and many on the editorial board are becoming fiscally responsible on government spending and benefits. Look at some of the recent editorials and blogs on Insight, with an open view, and I think you will be surprised at what you find.

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