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*** UPDATED x1 *** Tobolski’s chief of staff indicted on red-light cam bribery charges

Friday, Feb 14, 2020

* Stay tuned for more…


*** UPDATE *** The indictment is here.

…Adding… From the US Attorney’s office…

A sales agent for a Chicago-area red-light camera company has been indicted for allegedly conspiring to pay bribes to obtain approval to install additional cameras in suburban Oak Lawn.

PATRICK J. DOHERTY, 64, of Palos Heights, is charged with one count of conspiracy to use an interstate facility to facilitate bribery, and two counts of using an interstate facility to facilitate bribery. The indictment was returned Thursday in U.S. District Court in Chicago. An arraignment date has not yet been scheduled.

The indictment was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the FBI; and Kathy A. Enstrom, Special Agent-in-Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher J. Stetler, Tiffany A. Ardam and James P. Durkin.

According to the indictment, Doherty worked as a sales agent for the red-light camera company that since 2014 had a contract with Oak Lawn to provide cameras at certain intersections. Renewal of the contract and installation of cameras at additional intersections required approval from Oak Lawn’s Board of Trustees, the indictment states.

The charges allege that in 2017 Doherty conspired with an individual with a financial interest in the red-light camera company and another sales agent of the company to pay money to a relative of an elected Oak Lawn Trustee to influence the Trustee into using his official position to approve installation of cameras at additional intersections. The conspirators agreed to pay the relative a total of approximately $4,000 over an eight-week period, the indictment states. In order to conceal the purpose of the payments, the conspirators agreed that Doherty would make the payments from a separate company, the indictment states.

In a telephone conversation on May 25, 2017, Doherty told the other sales agent that Doherty would pay the Trustee’s relative “if it’s going to get us the job,” according to the indictment. Doherty allegedly added, “I’ll just pay it. Just make sure we get the, make sure we get the [expletive] thing, the contract.”

The public is reminded that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Each count in the indictment is punishable by up to five years in prison. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.

…Adding… A bit of history from the Sun-Times

In an interview last fall with the Chicago Sun-Times, Doherty said he had been interviewed by FBI and IRS agents at his home. He also insisted the interview was not about SafeSpeed.

Rather, Doherty said, agents asked about another company run by SafeSpeed investor Omar Maani — who is believed to be cooperating with federal authorities — that has been involved in low-income housing projects in Cicero and Summit. The projects involved the construction of dozens of townhomes and received taxpayer subsidies through county government, Doherty said.

Doherty and Tobolski were involved in getting Maani’s firm that funding, apparently without competitive bidding.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

22 Comments »
  1. - Candy Dogood - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 1:48 pm:

    I haven’t rooted for the FBI this much since Sean Connery and Kevin Costner teamed up in the award winning 1987 film, The Untouchables.


  2. - @misterjayem - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 1:51 pm:

    Guys, I’m starting to think these red-light cameras aren’t all about public safety…

    – MrJM


  3. - OneMan - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 1:54 pm:

    Only $4,000? A deal at twice the price.


  4. - Donnie Elgin - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 1:55 pm:

    A Total betrayal of public trust.


  5. - NeverPoliticallyCorrect - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:02 pm:

    As a life long resident of Cook County I know I should be hardened to these stories of public corruption. However, each time a new story emerges I find my anger reignited. There are just too many politicians here in Illinois that seem to think the public and their money belongs to them. Yet the public keeps re-electing these jokers. When will it ever end?


  6. - Responsa - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:05 pm:

    Gotta guess Patrick’s Valentines Day dinner tonight is pretty ruined.


  7. - Precinct Captain - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:06 pm:

    I wonder who the trustee is or was? And the sales agent? John O’Sullivan maybe for the latter?


  8. - Responsa - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:09 pm:

    ==There are just too many politicians here in Illinois that seem to think the public and their money belongs to them.==

    Even sadder, in corruption cases it always takes two (or more) to tango.


  9. - Responsa - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:17 pm:

    Ding Dong.

    Honey, the pizza guy is here.
    Oh rats, no. I think it’s a process server.

    Or maybe the FEDs.


  10. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:18 pm:

    “And for what? For a little bit of money? There’s more to life than a little money, you know. Don’tcha know that? And here ya are, and it’s a beautiful day. Well. I just don’t understand it.”

    - Marge…


  11. - Quill - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:18 pm:

    He’s not related to Jay Doherty is he? There ARE a lot of Dohertys, but one does wonder.


  12. - Roman - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:20 pm:

    This fills in a lot of the gaps on the unnamed players:

    https://chicago.suntimes.com/2019/11/12/20955538/safespeed-john-osullivan-oak-lawn-red-light-camera-tickets-nikki-zollar-federal-investigation


  13. - Responsa - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:21 pm:

    Fargo had it all nailed perfectly.


  14. - Homer Simpson's Brain - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:27 pm:

    It’s impossible to restrain human impulses. It’s like saying why do we still have drunks, and liars, and cheats, etc. All we can really do is exercise eternal vigilance and deal with these people one case at a time.


  15. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:29 pm:

    - Responsa -

    Marge understood the human condition.

    Love the film too


  16. - Oak Parker - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:30 pm:

    The first thing I want to know with each case:

    How much cash did the Feds seize from his house?


  17. - Roman - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:39 pm:

    Based on the indictment, looks like the feds had a bug on Doherty’s phone back in May of 2017. This things been cooking for a while.


  18. - Terry Salad - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:46 pm:

    Go ahead and tell me that if I complain about red light cameras that I should “just obey the law.”

    It was about money. It always was and when that happens it invites corruption.


  19. - Hard D - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 2:48 pm:

    Doherty and O’Sullivan are also the sales agents for Alsip and Crestwood. If memory serves me correct the Sun Times reported that Crestwood has the top 2 money making red lites in the state. The Mayor of Crestwood might be laying low this Valentines Day.


  20. - Curious - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 3:41 pm:

    Does anyone have any insight on why it would take almost three years for the feds to indict?


  21. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 3:48 pm:

    -Does anyone have any insight on why it would take almost three years for the feds to indict?-

    Could be any number of reasons - didn’t want to spill the beans and jeopardize other investigations before, defendant could be cooperating, the alleged criminal activity was concealed for part of the time, etc.


  22. - Curious - Friday, Feb 14, 20 @ 4:04 pm:

    Thanks RB


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