St. Clair County Circuit Judge Andrew Gleeson on Jan. 10 reset a Jan. 15 summary judgment motion hearing in a civil lawsuit against former Madison County attorney Lowell Thomas Lakin to Feb. 19.
The suit, which was originally filed under seal in Madison County, accuses Lakin of child sexual abuse. The accusations in the civil lawsuit launched an investigation which resulted in Lakin’s 2008 federal conviction on drug charges.
The suit also was transferred from Madison County to St. Clair County. And, while both federal state investigations played out, the 2006 lawsuit was put on hold.
State prosecutors, following a protracted investigation, finally wrapped up their case against Lakin in October 2011. In front of Madison County Circuit Court Judge Charles Romani, Lakin admitted that he committed sexual abuse on a 15-year-old boy. He did not plead guilty, but he submitted a stipulation of facts similar to a guilty plea.
Lakin accepted a six year sentence to run concurrently with his federal sentence. His release date from a Texas prison is Nov. 30.
Plaintiff attorney Ed Unsell of East Alton, who was allowed to proceed with the civil suit after the state finished its case against Lakin, filed an amended complaint on Jan. 18, “to conform to evidence adduced through discovery to date.”
According to the amended complaint, Lakin was an adult friend of the families of the minors he is accused of abusing and had care, custody, control and dominion over them.
Plaintiff Mary Doe, mother of John and Joseph Doe, was an employee of Lakin and the now former Lakin Law Firm, the suit claims.
The lawsuit accuses Lakin of sexually abusing Mary Doe’s sons and harassing her daughter. He also is accused of filing harassing lawsuits against Mary Doe.
The suit states that Lakin purchased a home for the plaintiff’s use and then filed an eviction claim against Mary Doe and her children.
Lakin allegedly conducted surveillance on the children at their schools, including through improper contacts and conversations with teachers; he allegedly repossessed a car Mary Doe's minor daughter was driving while the girl was attending class at Roxana High School; and he allegedly threatened the plaintiff with further lawsuits, according to Mary Doe's lawsuit.
The complaint also claims that Lakin allegedly allowed minor John Doe to consume alcohol; negligently and carelessly allowed John Doe to engage in sexual acts while in the defendant’s care, custody and control; negligently and carelessly created an environment where John Doe consumed alcohol and was sexually abused by multiple women.
Mary Doe seeks more than $75,000 in damages.
Samantha Unsell of Keefe & Keefe also represents the plaintiff.
Lakin, who is represented by Clyde Kuehn of Belleville, has not yet entered any pleadings in the case.
St. Clair County case number 06-L-363