Madison - St. Clair Record

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Former Caseyville police chief Alvarez and mayor Black remain at odds in court

By Record News | Jul 11, 2016

Former Caseyville police chief Jose Alvarez broke an agreement to settle his termination suit for $37,500, mayor Leonard Black alleged on July 5. 

Black moved to enforce an agreement he claimed to have reached with Alvarez on May 4, in proceedings before St. Clair County Circuit Judge Stephen McGlynn. 

Village counsel Brian Manion wrote, “The terms of the settlement were agreed to on the record by the parties and their counsel before Judge McGlynn.” 

According to Manion, the agreement provided $25,000 to Alvarez and $12,500 to his lawyer, Robert Jones of Belleville. 

McGlynn won’t resolve the dispute, for he immediately recused himself. 

In his previous docket entry, on June 1, McGlynn wrote, “Plaintiff has not executed settlement release as of yet.” 

Black appointed Alvarez in 2013, at a time of tense transition in Caseyville. 

That spring, Black had defeated incumbent mayor George Chance. 

That summer, police chief J. D. Roth had committed suicide. 

The new team didn’t relieve the tension, and Black soon tried to fire Alvarez. 

In March 2014, Alvarez sued Black and the village in chancery court to keep his job. 

Black then provided Alvarez with 13 reasons the village trustees would consider when deciding whether to fire him. 

The trustees reviewed the list with Alvarez at a hearing that November, and they voted against him by four to two. 

Alvarez yielded the office but persisted in his suit, constantly amending the complaint. 

He added trustee Rick Casey Jr. as an individual defendant along with Black. 

He added to his claims under state law a claim of property deprivation under the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. 

That prompted Black to remove the action to U. S. district court, where he moved to dismiss the action. 

District Judge Phil Gilbert dismissed the constitutional claim and remanded the action to St. Clair County. 

“Judge McGlynn has invested substantial resources in overseeing this case since its inception,” Gilbert wrote. 

“It would be far more efficient to let Judge McGlynn decide the state law issues in this case,” he wrote. 

Meanwhile, in St. Clair County, Chief Judge Judge John Baricevic had transferred the chancery court docket from McGlynn to Circuit Judge Robert LeChien. 

Alvarez and Black jointly requested that McGlynn remain on the case, and Baricevic granted the request. 

As of July 7, Baricevic had not assigned a judge to replace McGlynn.

Want to get notified whenever we write about ?

Sign-up Next time we write about , we'll email you a link to the story. You may edit your settings or unsubscribe at any time.