Madison - St. Clair Record

Saturday, September 21, 2019

What to do when the dog won't behave

Our View

By The Madison County Record | Oct 4, 2016


Who let the dog out?

That's the question you ask when the dog goes missing and you've got to look for him. Especially if he's a bad dog, one that hasn't been trained properly and doesn't mind. You know he's going to get into trouble, so you've got to find him fast and get him locked up.

Le chien is “the dog” in French, and the last name of a judge in St. Clair County.

Robert LeChien is a bad doggie, too. You'd think a judge would have some training and know how to follow rules, but LeChien seems to think that the rules don't apply to him.

That's a problem. If common sense rules don’t apply to LeChien, how can that apply to anyone else? People are going to ask that question. If they don't get a reasonable answer, they're going to lose respect for law, maybe even become lawless.

Along with fellow circuit court judges John Baricevic and Robert Haida, LeChien decided he'd avoid the higher retention standard state law sets for incumbents (60 percent) by resigning his judgeship and pretending to be a first-time candidate in November, electable by a simple majority.

The old dog is pretending that his new trick is ok, since it's not expressly prohibited, but it's clear to any reasonable person that he's bending the rules to the breaking point.

Having bent that rule, LeChien proceeded to another, the one that requires a sitting judge to recuse himself when he has a relationship with a party appearing before him in court.

LeChien dismissed a suit filed against Cahokia Village Clerk Richard Duncan by Donna Ayres, who subsequently provided documentary evidence of the relationship between the judge and the defendant. She’s appealing the case.

If he wouldn't recuse himself from a race he doesn't belong in, why would he recuse himself from a case?

 LeChien is a bad doggie.

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