Last week, attorney Margaret Lowery filed a petition in St. Clair County Circuit Court seeking to have Chief Judge Andrew Gleeson substituted for cause in her case against Trent’s Quality Construction. She accuses Gleeson of having demonstrated bias against her following an incident that occurred two years ago.
“On December 30, 2016, Lowery overheard a conversation at the St. Clair Country Club bar involving Judge [Ron] Duebbert,” her petition reads. “In April of 2017, Lowery provided a written statement to Judge Duebbert for a Judicial Inquiry Board [JIB] response.”
After her statement was leaked to the public, the petition continues,“Judge Andrew Gleeson and St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly filed a complaint with the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission [ARDC],” alleging that Lowery had made “outlandish, outrageous and clearly false and reckless statements implying that there was a vast and pervasive conspiracy to remove Circuit Judge Ron Duebbert from the bench of the Twentieth Judicial Circuit.”
Gleeson and Kelly also claimed that Lowery had “accused former Chief Judge John Baricevic, myself (Judge Gleeson), the Major Case Squad, the involved police agencies and the (Illinois) Supreme Court itself of being complicit in a conspiracy to commit first degree murder.”
Lowery denies making any such claim. “Judge Gleeson’s ARDC complaint demonstrates his extreme bias and prejudice against Ms. Lowery because he attributes what Ms. Lowery overhead as being her own personal beliefs and opinions. At no time has Ms. Lowery ever accused nor insinuated that said persons were conspiring to commit first degree murder as alleged by Judge Gleeson in his complaint.”
Lowery notes that the Inquiry Board “considered the charge made (by Judge Gleeson & Brendan Kelly) against Ms. Lowery and it voted to close its investigation.”
Gleeson’s bias toward Lowery is obvious – and seems to extend to anyone questioning the questionable practices of some St. Clair County judges and law enforcement officials. Gleeson’s bias should be challenged by all who appear in his court, and a special prosecutor should be appointed to investigate the strange conversation Lowery wrote about.