Republican state Rep. Ronald L. Sandack, a top of ally of Gov. Bruce Rauner, went to police in his hometown earlier this month to report an “Internet scam” — but a report about the incident reveals little about what led Sandack to abruptly resign his seat in the Illinois House over the weekend.
Sandack issued a statement to the Capitol Fax political blog on Sunday saying that “cyber security issues” forced him to re-evaluate his “continued public service” and that he was resigning immediately. But the three-page police report released Tuesday afternoon by the Downers Grove Police Department offers no details about what might have happened to Sandack, as virtually the entire narrative is blacked out.
Disclosing the information “would obstruct an ongoing criminal investigation,” the police said in their response to a Chicago Sun-Times Freedom of Information Act request, also noting that supplemental case reports “have not been completed as of the date of this response.”
Sandack, 52, a former Downers Grove mayor, met with an officer on July 14, 2016, a Tuesday evening, “in reference to a walk-in report of an Internet scam.” The narrative in the police report notes that the incident began on July 7, but the rest of that page and the next are almost completely redacted.
Asked about Sandack’s resignation, Rauner told reporters he didn’t have much to add.
“I really can’t comment much on Mr. Sandack’s situation. I heard about it yesterday morning, the same time most of you did. I am not sure what all is going on there, so I can’t comment,” Rauner said.
Asked if it was difficult to lose a top ally, Rauner repeated that he could not comment, adding that he has not talked to Sandack.
To be clear here, Sandack was Rauner’s top floor leader and one of his most persistent defenders in the House chamber and in social media.
The claim that some online mischief maker using tired and predictable tricks drove one of the state’s most prominent lawmakers back into private life sounds more like pretext than explanation.
But explanations are things that Citizen Sandack no longer owes us.
That’s true, but others still might owe us something.
*** UPDATE *** The Sun-Times asked Speaker Madigan about the issue today…
Asked Wednesday morning at a Democratic National Convention breakfast whether Democrats had any role in the cyber attacks that Sandack had cited in resigning, the Southwest Side Democrat replied “No. . . . I’ll let Sandack speak to what his problem is. I don’t know anything about it.”
Sandack had been facing a challenge from Democrat Greg Hose in the November election — a race that might now be more winnable for Democrats with the much better-known Sandack off the ballot.
“Again, I’d leave it up to Sandack to explain his problems,” Madigan said.