Village hit with addition to ethics complaint; date for special meeting tentatively set

By Gary Scott on April 13, 2015 at 11:22pm

South Jacksonville’s village board will reportedly meet this week for a special meeting to talk about how an ethics complaint filed with trustees is to be addressed.

Village Attorney Allen Yow told WLDS-WEAI News that the meeting will focus on creating a three-member ethics commission panel that could consist of board members or others from the community.

Yow says the responsibility of creating the commission falls on the village board instead of Village President Gordon Jumper because Jumper is one of the three people mentioned in the complaint. Yow says the board will have to meet again for the commission to be formerly installed.

The complaint was filed at the last board meeting by village resident Tyson Manker through the hundreds of people who have signed a petition calling for the resignation of Jumper, village Police Chief Richard Evans, and former village clerk and current treasurer Linda Douglass.

Manker on Monday filed an addendum to the complaint based on Evans’ announcement that he’s retiring at the end of next month.

In the follow-up, Manker breaks down the retirement statement and Evans’ recap of the police department’s actions following the Illinois State Police’s year-long 2014 investigation into alleged wrongdoing at Village Hall.

Manker says Evans’ statement “strongly refutes or ignores most of the facts submitted and conclusions reached by ISP investigators.” He notes Evans, in his report, does not directly mention the allegations of theft against Linda Douglass.

Manker wants the ethics commission to consider Evans’ statement for imposing ethical or criminal sanctions.

Manker’s complaint requests copies of communications between the village, Attorney Yow, and the Illinois Attorney General regarding why the AG reportedly gave legal advice to village officials, per Evans’ comments in his statement.

It also requests copies of the internal investigation report Evans says was given to the Appellate Prosecutor’s Office, which told our radio station they hadn’t received any such report last week.

There are several other requests for documents related to alleged improper downloads of pornographic apps on Evans’ village-paid iPhone and regarding his admitted use of petty cash to pay for lunches.

Other highlights of the complaint addendum include an observation that state police investigators were never able to conduct a complete physical search of Village Hall because he says their search warrant request was denied in Morgan County Court.

Manker apparently reached out to Illinois State Police investigators involved with the report who said they completely stand by their report, despite Evans’ assertion that the report didn’t suggest the highest state police standards.

You can view the full addition to the complaint by clicking below.

Citizens’ Ethics Complaint Addendum