Oakwood Hills Power Plant Supporters Use FaceBook to Oppose Gottemoller’s County Board Candidacy

This image of Joe Gottemoller is featured on the FaceBook page of the Oakwood Hills power plant opponents.

This image of Joe Gottemoller is featured on the FaceBook page of the Oakwood Hills power plant opponents.

The opponents of the gas generated electric power plant in Oakwood Hills have not forgotten that McHenry County Board member Joe Gottemoller was the attorney for the company that wanted to build it.

While Gottemoller dropped out as attorney, hard feelings apparently still exist.

Oakwood Hills and environs are located in the District 3 that Gottemoller represents.

He is the only incumbent running. Mary McClelland decided to run for County Clerk instead and won the Primary Election.

Former County Board member Kathy Bergan Schmidt, a Democrat from rural Crystal Lake, and Republican Don Kopsell, former Nunda Township Highway Commissioner *defeated for re-nomination in last year’s GOP Primary Election) are also on the ballot.

Gottmoller’s political future is clearly on the line.

Consider the sign across Route 176 from where the power plant was to be built.

"On Nov 4th Vote No to Power Plant Support Joe Gottemoller," reads the sign at Valley View Road and Route 176.

“On Nov 4th Vote No to Power Plant Support Joe Gottemoller,” reads the sign at Valley View Road and Route 176.

There’s a lot of traffic on 176 and there is an unobstructed view going west. (Going east a Kopsell 4 by 4 foot sign obstructs the anti-Gottemoller message.)

The real danger to Gottemoller, however, is the robust FaceBook page the power plant opponents developed.

One of the activists send me this email:

Our Facebook Page is www.facebook.com/nopeakerplant and we have about 3,700 Likes on that page so it hits all those people and we have bought additional advertising and we are up to about 4,500 views on that one post about the candidates we are “endorsing”.

Here’s another email addressing advertising on FaceBook:

We set all the villages in District 3 and then it will appear to anybody on facebook from those areas.  I am so surprised that local politicians do not use social media more effectively, they spend so much on print and signs but social media is the way of the future.

Recovered NBA Addict to Speak to CL Students & Parents

A press release from Crystal Lake High School District 155:

District 155 and the Crystal Lake Police Department have partnered to bring Chris Herren, a former NBA player, to talk to the Crystal Lake community about his story of substance abuse and recovery.

On November 6, Mr. Herren will speak to Crystal Lake Central students during a daytime assembly.

Herren bannerHe will talk about his struggles with obstacles that affect many adolescents, answer audience questions, and detail his rehabilitation and personal triumphs.

On November 5 at 7 p.m., Mr. Herren will host an evening presentation for parents and community members at Prairie Ridge High School.

We encourage all parents to attend this evening session.

The Crystal Lake Police Department would like to thank Sage Products, Home State Bank, the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office, the McHenry County Community Foundation, and Rosecrance for additionalfunding for these presentations with District 155. Questions? Contact Chief James Black at 815-356-4065 orKimberly Dahlem, District 155’s director of student services, at 815-455-8500.

Nick Chirikos Sends Postcard

County Board Member Nick Chirikos, Democrat from Algonquin, sent out a post card that landed in the mailbox today.

The front of Nick Chirikos' postcard.

The front of Nick Chirikos’ postcard.

The back contained several endorsements.

The back contained several endorsements.

The mail for the contested county board races is finally starting to trickle in.

Second 4th Amendment Suit Against Nygren, et al

The front door of the Jerome Pavlin home shows broken glass inside the vestibule.

The front door of the Jerome Pavlin home shows broken glass inside the vestibule.

A suit filed today by by Crystal Lake’s Pete Sonneville echoes one the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department lost to Jerome and Carla Pavlin.

Sheriff’s deputies entered the Pavlin home north of Crystal Lake seeking their son without a search warrant.

They broke the glass section of the front door and took photos, including one from the top of the stairway on the second floor.

Both husband and wife were injured in the incident.

The Pavlin’s sued claiming their 4th Amendment right to be free of search without a warrant had been violated..

Rockford Federal Judge Frederick Kapala ruled that the Sheriff’s Deputies had violated the Pavlin’s right to be free of search and seizure.

A settlement was reached after that decision with the Pavlin’s getting paid $300,000.

As in the Pavlin case, Sonneville’s attorney is Louis J. Meyer.

Here are the facts as laid out in the suit against Keith Nygren, Michael Muraski, Robb Tadelman, Jeffrey Fields and McHenry County:

On October 6, 2014, Plaintiff was inside his house located in Crystal Lake, Illinois, where he has lived with his family for approximately 15 years.

Shortly before the incident, Plaintiff had stopped at home, parked his company truck in the driveway, and went inside to clean up before some professional sales calls.

At approximately 2:20 p.m., Plaintiff was preparing to take a shower.

Plaintiff went into the master bedroom, turned on a radio, and disrobed.

Right before Plaintiff was about to get in the shower, he heard some voices in his house.

At first, Plaintiff thought it might be his daughter and some of her friends. In fact, the voices were of three McHenry County Sheriff’s deputies, Defendants MURASKI, FIELDS and TADELMAN.

The Defendant-Officers searched Plaintiff’s house. No contraband or evidence of criminal activity was found.

The voices got louder and Plaintiff heard someone banging on his bedroom door.

The person banging on Plaintiff’s bedroom door ordered Plaintiff to come out of his bedroom. Upon information and belief, this person was Defendant MURASKI.

Plaintiff informed the Defendants that he was about to get in the shower and did not have any clothes on. Plaintiff also asked who they were.

Defendant MURASKI stated they were McHenry County Sheriffs and that Plaintiff had to exit his bedroom.

Plaintiff told the Defendant-Officers to hold on as he was trying to get dressed.

Defendant MURASKI continued to bang on the bedroom door and again ordered Plaintiff put on some clothes and went to open his bedroom door.

When Plaintiff opened his door, he observed Defendants MURASKI, FIELDS and TADELMAN in the hallway pointing guns directly at him.

Defendant MURASKI ordered Plaintiff to show his hands and identify himself.

Plaintiff complied and informed the Defendant-Officers that he was the owner of the house.

The Defendant-Officers continued to point their guns at Plaintiff.

The Defendant-Officers seized Plaintiff.

There was not probable cause or any other legal justification to seize Plaintiff.

Plaintiff told the officers that they had no right to be in his house.

Plaintiff ordered the Defendant-Officers out of his house.

Later, when Plaintiff complained of the Defendant-Officers’ conduct, Lt. Popovich of the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department told Plaintiff that his deputies had “exigent circumstances” to enter Plaintiff’s house without a warrant.

At the time the Defendant-Officers entered Plaintiff’s house, there were no signs of forced entry; they were not chasing anyone into Plaintiff’s house; they had not been told that someone was inside Plaintiff’s house; and there were no 911 calls regarding intruders at Plaintiff’s house. Notably, Plaintiff’s clearly marked work truck was parked in his driveway, right next to the door the Defendant-Officers entered.

Each individual Defendant-Officer acted willfully and wantonly, maliciously, and with a conscious disregard and deliberate indifference to Plaintiff’s rights.

As a direct and proximate result of the acts of the Defendants described above, Plaintiff suffered damages including loss of physical liberty, emotional distress, and pecuniary damages for monies used to install a new door.

There are seven counts in the suit:

  1. Unreasonable seizure (Pointing guns at Sonneville without a reasonable suspicion he was involved in criminal activity at the time)
  2. Unreasonable seizure (Outside his bedroom, presenting no danger to the officers, they violated Plaintiff’s Fourth Amendment right, as guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment, to be free from the use of excessive and unreasonable force.)
  3. Unreasonable search of the home (Officers did not have a search warrant, consent, exigent circumstances, or any other legal justification to search Plaintiff’s home.)
  4. Monell Claim against Sheriff Keith Nygren (see below)
  5. State Law Claim for Assault (The officers pointed loaded guns at Plaintiff who was unarmed and in his own home. The act of pointing the loaded guns at Plaintiff placed Plaintiff in fear of being shot.)
  6. State Law Respondeat Superior Claim (The acts of the Defendant-Officers described in the above state-law claim for assault were willful and wanton, and committed in the scope of employment. Pursuant to respondeat superior, Defendant Nygren is liable for his agents’ actions.)
  7. Indemnification Claim (The acts described were willful and wanton, and committed in the scope of employment. Plaintiff asks that this Honorable Court order Defendant McHenry County to indemnify the other defendants.)

A Monell claim is regularly made against those in authority. It alleges that supervision was improper.

Such claims are rarely won, but it seems that Myer is going to make a real run at proving this one.

Here is what he states:

Keith Nygren

Sheriff Keith Nygren

The incident alleged in this Complaint was part of a pattern and practice of Defendant NYGREN in failing to properly supervise his officers.

At all times material to this Complaint, there existed in the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department the following practices, policies and customs:

a. Illegal entry and searches of homes,

b. a code of silence in which officers fail to report officer misconduct,

c. failure to adequately supervise and discipline officers in the categories and fields of police work addressed above,

d. failure to adequately investigate complaints against officers,

The actions of Defendants MURASKI, FIELDS and TADELMAN as alleged in this Complaint were committed pursuant to, and as a result of, one or more of the above de facto practices, policies and customs of Defendant NYGREN, the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department, and its officers.

In the case of Pavlin v. McHenry County, et. al., No. 09-cv-50154, Judge Kapala found that the Defendant McHenry County Sheriff’s deputies had violated the Pavlin’s Fourth Amendment Rights when they illegally entered the Pavlin’s home. Even after Judge Kapala’s ruling, Defendant NYGREN defended the deputies stating “Our officers did nothing wrong. Our people did the right thing, and I support them 100 percent.”

On October 9, 2014, Lt. Popovich told the Northwest Herald that proper protocol was followed regarding Plaintiff’s situation and that a warrant was not needed to enter Plaintiff’s

Such statements made by Defendant NYGREN and other ranking members of the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department in support of deputies that have been found to have violated civilians’ constitutional ights has fostered an environment wherein deputies, such as Defendants MURASKI, FIELDS and TADELMAN, are able to violate civilians’ civil rights without fear of punishment or reprimand from their superiors, including Defendant NYGREN.

Defendant NYGREN, as the official policy maker within the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department, acted with deliberate indifference to the rights of Plaintiff in maintaining, overlooking and preserving the unconstitutional practices, policies and customs delineated above.

By Defendant NYGREN’s inaction and failure to correct the above-described practices, policies and customs, municipal policy-makers tacitly approve and thus indirectly authorize the type of misconduct Plaintiff complains of herein.

= = = = =
The full filing can be found here.

Little Townships’ GOP Mail

The tiniest townships in McHenry County, organized as the NorWest Republican Republican Central Committee, have mailed a postcard to area voters in the mostly rural area.

You can see it below.

The address side pitches McHenry County Sheriff’s candidate Bill Prim.
NorWest GOP mailikng 2014 address

The other side features State Rep. candidate Steve Reick and District 4 County Board candidates John Hammerand and Chuck Wheeler.  (The organization includes Richmond and Burton Townships, which are in McHenry County Board District 4.)

NorWest GOP mailikng 2014 back
The other GOP candidates are listed below.

County Board District 5 Republicans Mail

I’m not in District 5, but the Crystal Lake Post Office delivered the postcard you see below today.

Incumbent John Jung got the address side of the mailing:

John Jung's side of the County Board mailing.

John Jung’s side of the County Board mailing.

The other side is devoted to Michael Rein’s candidacy. He and Jung are up against Democrat Paula Yensen, running her third time.
This is Michael Rein's side of the postcard.

This is Michael Rein’s side of the postcard.

Yensen has been asked to send a copy of her mailing.

Salgado Robo-Calls

A robo-call from McHenry County Republican Central Committee Chairman Sandra Salgado:

Bruce Rauner greets McHenry County Republican Chairman Sandra Salgado.

Bruce Rauner greets McHenry County Republican Chairman Sandra Salgado.

Chicago Democrats want to take 16 million dollars out of the McHenry County School systems and send it to Chicago

We cannot let this happen.

The time to act is now!

Let’s keep McHenry County taxes in McHenry County.

Please join me, Sandra Salgado, McHenry County Republican Party Chairman, on Nov 4th, and send a message to the Democrats by overwhelmingly voting Bruce Rauner into office of Governor and re-electing our Republican State Legislators.

This message is paid for by the McHenry County Republican Party

Nunda Twp GOP Mailing

Mike Shorten, the Chairman of the Nunda Township Republican Central Committee, was kind enough to send his organization’s pre-election mailing.

You can see it below:

The Nunda Township Republican Central Committee mailing's address side.

The Nunda Township Republican Central Committee mailing’s address side showcases statewide candidates who are putting on a campaign, plus Sheriff’s candidate Bill Prim and the two GOP candidates for McHenry County Board–Joe Gottemoller and Don Kopsell.

The back of the Nunda Township Republican Party mailing.

The back of the Nunda Township Republican Party mailing highlights gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner, plus two candidates for State Representative facing token opposition, Barbara Wheeler and David McSweeney.

CL Councilman Endorses Bill Prim, Praises Clean Campaign

Jeff Thorsen

Jeff Thorsen

Crystal Lake City Councilman Jeff Thorsen ran unsuccessfully for McHenry County Treasurer in the Republican Primary Election, but from his attendance at Republican events, you would hardly think so.

He is an active supporter of Bill Prim and offers the following reasons:

This sheriff’s election is the single most important election in memory.

The outcome will place considerable power into the hands of the victor.

Bill Prim will handle this burden with great responsibility.

Those of you who know me know that I do not abide negative campaign strategies.

I hate to see the run for sheriff dissolve into a one-sided mud-slinging event that revolves around nothing that has to do with candidate qualifications and seeks to demean supporters for past events.

I wonder where that train will stop.

Bill Prim has not allowed his campaign to tread that low road.

I know that it is hard to remain on the high road when supporters become the decided targets of your opponent’s mission.

I see this as a choice between an honest shake from Bill or a guy who might one day be looking for a way to come after you.

Vote Bill Prim.

Rauner-Reick Billboards Appear

Saw these billboards on Virginia Street Road.

They promote the candidacy of Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner and GOP State Rep. candidate Steve Reick.

Republican candidate Bruce Rauner, who is expected to carry McHenry County, boosts the candidacy of State Rep. candidate Steve Reick, who is running against Democrat Jack Franks, in these billboards.

Republican candidate Bruce Rauner, who is expected to carry McHenry County, boosts the candidacy of State Rep. candidate Steve Reick, who is running against Democrat Jack Franks, in these billboards.

“Change Springfield before it’s too late.”

That’s the message.