State prosecutor says Lakin case is still ongoing

Ann Knef Sep. 18, 2008, 3:18pm

Special prosecutor Charles Coburn said the state is still investigating whether to bring criminal charges against Tom Lakin.

Lakin was taken into custody by U.S. Marshals last week after pleading guilty to drug charges in federal court in East St. Louis before U.S. District Judge J. Phil Gilbert.

Coburn said the resolution of Lakin's federal criminal case "doesn't have any effect on the state investigation."

Lakin could potentially face criminal sexual assault charges. He is the subject of a civil sexual assault complaint in St. Clair County alleging he had sex with an underage male. The case has been on hold pending the outcome of Lakin's federal case.

Lakin was originally indicted in April 2007 for cocaine possession and transporting a minor across state lines for sexual purposes.

Coburn, one of five special prosecutors from the Illinois Attorney Appellate Prosecutor's Agency, said he couldn't give a time frame as to when the state would file a case against Lakin or drop the investigation.

In June 2006, Madison County State's Attorney Bill Mudge asked for outside assistance from the agency's Special Prosecution Unit because he perceived a conflict of interest if charges were to be brought against Lakin, founder of the Lakin Law Firm in Wood River. Mudge's former law firm has represented Lakin in the past.

If a conflict of interest arises in a state's attorneys office, and the office wants an independent review and prosecution by an outsider, the Illinois Attorney Appellate Prosecutor's Agency can intervene.

More News