* Richard Irvin campaign…
Despite JB Pritzker shamelessly appearing at the Illinois State Police centennial anniversary event [today], it will be lost on no one that it’s Pritzker who signed the most anti-law enforcement bill in Illinois history - the same bill that is defunding local police departments and letting criminals back into our communities as crime continues skyrocketing across the state.
Will Pritzker even bother to mention to today’s crowd that it is his very own Prisoner Review Board who supported paroling James Taylor in August 2020, who was convicted of killing State Trooper Layton Davis in 1976?
JB Pritzker’s anti-law enforcement policies are devastating police departments across Illinois, as officers resign in numbers while citing Pritzker’s mandated changes that have made it harder for police to do their jobs. In some cases, the resignations have taken out full departments leaving communities without any police officers at all.
In addition to a central Illinois Police Department being permanently disbanded due to JB Pritzker’s anti-police bill, a suburban department is also reporting significant challenges. Fifteen police officers have left the Oak Park Police Department since 2020, with Police Chief LaDon Reynold noting “the industry of policing…going through a transformation,” and a city trustee faulting, “the lack of support for our police department from elected officials and from the community at large.”
Piatt County Sheriff David Hunt, Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettlekamp, and Chris Southwood, president of the Illinois Fraternal Order of Police, also decried the effects of Pritzker’s policies in Springfield last month, emphasizing the increasing number of law enforcement officers leaving the profession due to the lack of support from elected officials.
Richard Irvin, Mayor of Aurora and gubernatorial candidate, has denounced Pritzker’s defund the police movement and has a proven record of standing with law enforcement to reduce crime.
“JB Pritzker can attend as many ceremonies as he wants, but it won’t erase the fact that he signed one of the most egregious anti-police laws that is defunding local police departments, putting criminals into our communities and placing lives in danger,” said Irvin for Illinois spokesperson Eleni Demertzis. “Illinois families need a governor who will prioritize their safety over criminals.”
Color me dubious about that bit about a department being permanently disbanded solely because of the SAFE-T Act. Same goes for the suburban issue mentioned.
* Today, a reporter noted to Gov. Pritzker that he said he stood by his appointments to the Prisoner Review Board who were rejected or forced out of office by the Senate. But, Pritzker was asked, does he stand by those same board members’ decisions to release convicted cop killers?…
Pritzker: Look, let me start by saying that we appoint highly qualified candidates to serve on the Prisoner Review Board. This is a very, very difficult job. Let me just outline for all of you that every case that comes before them is a difficult one. Someone that comes before them has committed some awful crime in the past. And they’re charged with looking at all the facts and circumstances from the beginning when the crime took place, to their term in prison, and how they were rehabilitated or not, whether they caused problems when they were in prison or not, whether they would be a danger to the public if they were released, all those things are taking into consideration. By the way, a majority of the people that come before the Prisoner Review Board are rejected. So it’s actually many fewer cases than anybody would like to admit that where they’re actually recommending that someone be released. And I will just say it’s an incredibly thankless job. Very, very difficult. We have Republicans on that board, we have Democrats on that board. They work together across the aisle, they don’t even think, I think, of their their party affiliation when they’re doing the job.
Now to have Republicans attack them and their character and their biographies, to have Republicans essentially trying to tear apart this agency of government. I mean, this is what the GQP has been all about, tearing government apart. I think we ought to stand up for the integrity of the people that get appointed, and the very tough decisions that they have to make. But obviously, we’re going to move forward and keep the PRB operating as best we can.
Q: Do you stand by their decisions?
Pritzker: Listen, I don’t see all of the details of each decision that they make. It’s easy to do what the Republicans do. They take the original crime that took place, often decades and decades ago. And they just talk about the headline of that crime and don’t talk about everything else that’s occurred, including what the victim’s statements have been, including the victims’ families statements, including other information that may have come forward in the subsequent decades, in order to make their decisions. So it’s hard to second guess the work that they do. It’s very easy just to say, this person committed an awful crime some many years ago, and to say we’re gonna throw away the key, leave them all in prison. That’s what you’re gonna end up with, if that’s what people want, well let’s hear that. But I don’t think that’s what people wanted when we created the Prisoner Review Board.
Please pardon all transcription errors, but “GQP” is not a typo. Pritzker slowed down to say each letter very clearly…
Blend of GOP + QAnon. The GOP stands for “Grand Old Party”, the Republican Party of the United States of America, a conservative political party. The usage of “Q” refers to Republican politicians either supporting the QAnon conspiracy theories or becoming closer to extremism and fascism.
* Also, the PRB has allegedly not always been careful about notifying victims. From last year…
The man who killed Illinois State Police Trooper Layton Davis in 1976 was released from prison Thursday under a new law that allows parole for medical reasons. […]
Hyche is the first prisoner released under the new law, according to Kahalah Clay, chief legal counsel for the Illinois Prisoner Review Board. […]
The trooper’s family is upset they didn’t get to voice opinions about Hyche to the Illinois Prisoner Review Board.
“We were notified that there was going to be a parole hearing in March and that we had until Feb. 9 to get objection letters in,” said the trooper’s grandson. “Then we found out yesterday – on the 9th – that they had already convened the medical board and that they had already submitted their recommendation to the parole board and that the parole board on the 8th of February had already made a decision to release him.
* And the governor had no qualms about criticizing Kim Foxx for trying to release violent convicts the other day. Here’s a recent report from Mary Ann Ahern…
MAA: At a campaign stop on the West Side, Governor Pritzker distanced himself from Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx. Republican opponents blame Foxx and Pritzker for the huge crime bill signed one year ago. Foxx’s office is asking for early release for prisoners quote, if the original sentence no longer advances the interests of justice. Pritzker’s opponents like Republican state Senator Darren Bailey say that may lead to the early release of dangerous criminals.
Bailey: “People in Chicago, they don’t feel safe because they’re not safe. And unfortunately, that has spread across the entire state.”
Pritzker: “I think that Kim Foxx, you know, obviously she’s the prosecutor, the Cook County State’s Attorney. She has the right to make these decisions on her own. I’m just saying these are decisions I would have said to her: ‘Let’s start with nonviolent criminals.’
…Adding… Richard Irvin campaign…
In a heated moment today when the governor was called out for his hypocrisy in attending a police memorial as the Senate continues to reject his Prisoner Review Board appointees by wide bipartisan votes, JB Pritzker had the audacity to suggest that victims and their families are asking for these criminals to be released or paroled early.
Pritzker’s Prisoner Review Board granted parole to the following cop killers despite all of the victims’ families showing up to the parole hearings or writing letters to OPPOSE parole for these murderers:
Joseph Hurst: Convicted of killing Chicago police officer Herman Stallworth and wounding Stallworth’s partner with a bullet to the face. In February 2021, the PRB voted 8-4 to parole Hurst.
Johnny Veal: Convicted of killing Chicago police officers James Severin and Anthony Rizzato. In February 2021, the PRB voted 8-4 to grant parole to Veal.
James Taylor: Convicted of killing State Trooper Layton Davis during a traffic stop, and attempting to kill a motorist who witnessed the murder. In August 2020, the PRB voted 8-5 to grant parole to Taylor.
“It is clear that JB Pritzker is scrambling to hide from the fact that public safety has deteriorated throughout all of Illinois because of his dangerous anti-law enforcement policies,” said Irvin for Illinois campaign spokesperson Eleni Demertzis. “We have a governor who puts violent criminals ahead of victims, law enforcement, and entire communities. It’s time to take back our state.”
Video clip of Pritzker is here.
*** UPDATE *** SGOP Press release…
From Sen. Plummer in regard to the Governor calling Senate Republicans the GQP:
“In the spirit of Margaret Thatcher, when one’s opponents resort to low grade personal attacks, it shows that they have no legitimate political arguments left.
“I am embarrassed for the Governor. While I understand he is frustrated, this entire mess falls on his lap and these comments are beneath the dignity of the Office he holds.
“The Governor has never been accustomed to being told “no” and now that he has been told “no” by senators of both parties, I think he should take a deep breath and reevaluate the direction his Administration is taking when it comes to public safety.”