Former Caseyville police chief Jose Alvarez upset St. Clair County state’s attorney Brendan Kelly when he turned confidential disciplinary proceedings against county employee Richard Casey into public evidence in a lawsuit to regain his job.
Alvarez’s lawyer, Robert Jones of Belleville, reported Kelly’s reaction to Circuit Judge Stephen McGlynn at a hearing on Sept. 17.
“As an officer of the court I can tell you the phone conversations were pretty uncomfortable that day," Jones said.
Casey, as a village trustee in Caseyville, voted in May to fire Alvarez.
Alvarez, who investigated Casey’s conduct while working for Kelly, claims Casey should not have voted on his job.
Alvarez took the job a year ago, after Caseyville police chief J. D. Roth committed suicide.
In August, Jones filed documents showing the county demoted Casey and reduced his pay.
He attached the original complaint, from highway worker Raymond Bonds.
Jones told McGlynn that after he filed the documents, Kelly and Garrett Hoerner called.
Hoerner leads a Belleville firm that Kelly often retains for civil suits.
Jones told McGlynn they asked where Alvarez got the documents, and he told them Alvarez got them from Bonds.
"The village was on notice," Jones said. "They knew I knew he wasn’t disinterested.”
McGlynn said the record showed change of employment and substantial reduction of pay.
"I thought that was all done,” McGlynn said.
Jones said Kelly told him the complaint is pending and Casey still faces discipline.
Regarding Alvarez's ouster, Jones stated in court that Caseyville Mayor Leonard Black committed perjury for stating in an affidavit that Alvarez and his attorney were given an opportunity to be heard in a closed session.
“This did not occur,” Jones said.
Black stated after the hearing that it did.
McGlynn asked if Alvarez spoke before they voted.
“We asked for a continuance but there was nothing substantial,” Jones said.
Jones nodded at Caseyville attorney Brian Manion who was present at the hearing and told McGlynn, “He was not there and neither were you. It was a kangaroo court.”
McGlynn set another hearing Oct. 3.
Trustees who fired Alvarez gave 13 reasons including failure to post schedules, out of uniform, not at the station, disrespect, foul language, angry outbursts, and lying about Kelly.
Alvarez wants McGlynn to require more definite charges, a fair hearing, and another vote.
Frank Moore currently acts as chief. Caseyville can’t hire a permanent chief pending further order from McGlynn.