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Maybe a little context, please

Thursday, Aug 24, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller

* The last time we heard out of David Shestokas was in June, when the attorney and his client were sanctioned by a judge for filing a “frivolous lawsuit”

A Will County judge ordered the losing candidate in the 2022 race for Will County clerk and her attorney who filed an election fraud lawsuit to pay $35,000 in sanctions for what he called a “frivolous lawsuit.”

Republican Gretchen Fritz filed the lawsuit Dec. 28, claiming she believes “mistakes and fraud have been committed in the casting and counting of ballots” in the race because her opponent, Democratic Will County Clerk Lauren Staley Ferry, received more votes than Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Judge John Anderson dismissed the case March 30 and approved the $35,000 in sanctions Monday.

“It’ll be a deterrent so that these fake election lawsuits don’t get filed,” said Burt Odelson, Staley Ferry’s attorney.

Odelson filed a motion in April for Rule 137 sanctions against Fritz and her attorney, David Shestokas. Odelson petitioned for $40,047.25 in fees and costs for the case through April 10, but Anderson adjusted the fee to $35,000.

That lawsuit was quite a doozy

The losing candidate in the 2022 race for Will County clerk is asking a judge to order a new election in the case, citing mathematic formulas alleging the final count was fraudulent.

Republican Gretchen Fritz filed the lawsuit Dec. 28, claiming she believes “mistakes and fraud have been committed in the casting and counting of ballots” in the Will County clerk’s race because her opponent, Democratic Will County Clerk Lauren Staley Ferry, received more votes than Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker. […]

“Split ticket voting is a sign of a healthy democracy not bad elections,” [Erik Nisbet, Northwestern University associate professor of policy analysis and communication] said. “The fact that a local town clerk got more voters than the governor just means they saw the clerk race as less partisan than the governor race.” […]

Fritz’s attorney, David Shestokas, said Tuesday the lawsuit highlights a “21st Century approach to manipulating the election process.”


The allegations ignore the fact Will County uses paper ballots, [Judge John Anderson] wrote, so if Fritz believes the machine totals were inaccurate she could ask for a recount of those ballots.

Shestokas was also a main speaker at a downstate secessionist meeting in Quincy.

* Shestokas is now representing Rev. Stephen Lee, who is accused of “participating in a plot to coerce election worker Ruby Freeman into falsely confessing election fraud,” and is “facing felony charges that include racketeering, influencing a witness and conspiracy to solicit false statements and writings.” A little background on Ruby Freeman

Death threats from angry Trump supporters forced Georgia election worker Ruby Freeman, a 62-year-old grandmother, to flee her home of 20 years. Some messages called for her hanging; one urged people to “hunt” her. Freeman showed hundreds of menacing messages to police and called 911 three times.

But a year after Donald Trump and his allies falsely accused Freeman - along with her daughter and co-worker Wandrea “Shaye” Moss - of election fraud, the threats have not been investigated by local police or state authorities, according to a Reuters review of Georgia law enforcement records. Federal agents have monitored some of the threats, but made no arrests.

Offering the first detailed account of their ordeal, the two women told Reuters about threats of lynching and racial slurs, along with alarming visits by strangers to the homes of Freeman and her mother. The intimidation began last December, a month after the 2020 election, when the Trump campaign released surveillance video they falsely claimed showed the two women, who are Black, opening “suitcases” full of phony ballots to rig the vote count in predominantly Black Fulton County, which includes part of Atlanta.

With no one arrested for threatening them, and no police security detail, the women said their lives were thrown into chaos. Freeman told Reuters she moved from house to house out of fear for her safety.

A lot of those conspiracy theories were stoked by Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump.

* From the indictment

On or about the 4th day of January 2021 STEPHEN CLIFFGARD LEE, HARRISON WILLIAM PRESCOTT FLOYD, and TREVIAN C. KUTTI committed the felony offense of SOLICITATION OF FALSE STATEMENTS AND WRITINGS, in Violation of O.C.G.A. §§ 16-4-7 & 16-10-20, in Cobb County, Georgia, by soliciting, requesting, and importuning Ruby Freeman, a Fulton County, Georgia, election worker, to engage in conduct constituting the felony offense of False Statements and Writings, O.C.G.A. § 16-10-20, by knowingly and willfully making a false statement and representation concerning events at State Farm Arena in the November 3, 2020, presidential election in Georgia, said statement and representation being within the jurisdiction of the Office of the Georgia Secretary of State and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, departments and agencies of state government, and county and city law enforcement agencies, with intent that said person engage in said conduct. This was an act of racketeering activity under O.C.G.A. § l6—14-3(5)(A)(xxii) and an overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy.

* And yet there was no mention of any of Shestokas’ history in a recent Sun-Times article on Lee and Shestokas and in this ABC I-Team interview

In an exclusive interview, Lee’s attorney, David Shestokas, defended his client.

“He has the full complete support of this congregation, that I can tell you for sure because I was with them,” he said.

Shestokas also said the Georgia evidence is so thin that late last year a Kendall County, Illinois judge refused to order the minister to testify in front of a grand jury there as a possible witness. […]

Shestokas also said they will vigorously fight the charges.

“We will be entering a plea of not guilty, because frankly, there’s essentially four– four counts directly relating to Reverend Lee. Two of them has him knocking on, knocking on people’s doors and two of the others have him making a couple of telephone calls,” he said.

The knocking on doors thing were acts in furtherance of the RICO conspiracy.


  1. - Paddyrollingstone - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 11:26 am:

    I had first heard of David Shestokas when I saw the Will County decision, which led me to his website, which is a doozy. I am willing to bet that when all is said and done that the Rev. Lee will end up with another attorney and will end up being found guilty.

  2. - TheInvisibleMan - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 11:32 am:

    Another Republican had his election lawsuit dismissed yesterday. Well, it was more of a retaliation lawsuit for losing an election, but close enough.

  3. - Homebody - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 11:52 am:

    Having “support of your congregation” when accused to trying to overthrow a democratic election says more about your congregation than it says about you.

  4. - Telly - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 12:15 pm:

    The local media is just happy to have a “Chicago connection” to the Trump story. They don’t sweat the details.

  5. - Appears - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 12:16 pm:

    Why is it that so many of the Law and Order MAGA types seemingly don’t care at all about Law and Order. They only want Power.

  6. - G'Kar - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 12:35 pm:

    I’m not sure how all of this works, but wonder if Shestokas is a member of the Georgia Bar? Can he even represent Lee there?

  7. - Retired SURS Employee - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 12:59 pm:

    If the attorney is not a member of the Georgia Bar, he would have to seek leave of court to represent his client Pro Hac Vice (for only this one case).

  8. - unafraid - Thursday, Aug 24, 23 @ 1:02 pm:

    =Republican Gretchen Fritz filed the lawsuit Dec. 28, claiming she believes “mistakes and fraud have been committed in the casting and counting of ballots” in the race because her opponent, Democratic Will County Clerk Lauren Staley Ferry, received more votes than Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker.=

    I have no problem with elections being contested. But this lawsuit was absurd. One candidate often gets more votes than another on the same ticket. Often I have voted for a person on a party ticket but not voted for another one.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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