Benton judge to preside over Fiss case

By Ann Knef | Feb 22, 2007

Second Judicial Circuit Judge Robert M. Lewis of Benton has been appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court to hear the case of St. Clair County Circuit Judge Jan Fiss, who was charged with illegal transportation of alcohol for his involvement in the DUI arrest of another judge in December.

Charges were filed against Fiss on Feb. 8, more than two months after St. Clair County Circuit Judge Patrick Young, 58, was arrested by a Belleville patrolman for driving under the influence of alcohol and failure to yield.

Fiss, 64, who was a passenger in Young's vehicle, was seen pouring out a can of beer at the scene. He also attempted to conceal the beer, according to the police report.

In the accident, Young turned his vehicle left in front of an oncoming car, sending the other driver, Abel Muhammed, 40, of Swansea, to the hospital with a leg injury.

Fiss had been chief judge, but stepped down after the incident. St. Clair County Circuit Judge John Baricevic was elected interim chief judge.

Baricevic appointed special prosecutor Randy Patchett to investigate.

Young and Fiss were returning from the St. Louis Rams football game when the accident happened.

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