McHenry County Sheriff Wins Suit Against Health Department for ID of Those Actively Infected with Coronavirus

From the McHenry County State’s Attorney:


Patrick D. Kenneally, McHenry County State’s Attorney, announces that Judge Michael Chmiel has entered a Temporary Restraining Order mandating that the McHenry County Health Department disclose the names of those actively infected with COVID-19 to first responding officers.

The McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office filed the lawsuit earlier this week on behalf of the McHenry County Sheriff.

After filing, Algonquin, Lake in the Hills, McHenry City, and Woodstock Police Departments joined the Sheriff’s suit.

Bill Prim

According to Sheriff Prim, “[i]t’s critical that law enforcement receive this information in a timely fashion so we can keep our officers healthy in order to continue providing the best possible service to our communities.”

Prior to filing the lawsuit, the Sheriff had requested of the McHenry County Health Department that they provide the names and addresses of those actively infected with COVID-19 to the McHenry County Emergency Telephone System Board (“ETSB”), which oversees 9-1-1-dispatch in McHenry County.

“This information would then only be available to law enforcement officers, on a call-by-call basis, who are dispatched or responding to situations that involve affected individuals.

“Despite assurances that law enforcement officers would prioritize the confidentiality of this sensitive medical information and direction from federal and state officials that the disclosure was permissible, the Health Department refused to do so.

“Thereafter, the Sheriff filed the instant suit.

Patrick Kenneally
Patrick Kenneally

“This was a no-brainer for the Health Department, a common-sense, confidential, and entirely lawful way they could have worked collaboratively with police departments to assist in enhancing the safety of officers and the community in these dangerous times, and they strangely refused,” said Patrick Kenneally.

“The fact that we had to spend precious time and public resources, clearly best spent elsewhere in this difficult time, to get a court order in our favor is beyond disappointing.”

Pursuant to the emergency court order entered late Friday night, the Health Department must disclose the names of those currently infected with COVID-19 to the ETSB within 24-hours of being notified.

The court ordered further that any names received shall be purged from
ETSB records “7 days after the Department of Public Health deems these individuals to no longer be contagious.”

Lastly, the court ordered that “all information received by the ETSB shall remain and be kept confidential.”

= = = = =

Representing the Health Department were Robert Long and Douglas Dorando.


McHenry County Sheriff Wins Suit Against Health Department for ID of Those Actively Infected with Coronavirus — 52 Comments

  1. Wow, pretty sad.

    Constitution trashed.

    What new rights will they steal?

  2. This is only the beginning. You people have no idea where this is going. You have GIVEN up every right you ever had WILLINGLY over completely made up lies. We knew the new world order was coming, but how quickly you all caved is the shocker.

  3. “Conspiracy theories arise because people want simple explanations for complex and frightening events. Most people do not understand the electromagnetic spectrum and therefore might be scared to learn that 5G networks produce radiation.

    More importantly, conspiracies have a reassuring function psychologically because they make people feel that someone — even though they may be evil — is in control of events, rather than accepting the harsh reality of disorder and chaos.

    And most conspiracy theories make the believers feel clever, as if they are the only ones who understand what is really going on.

    Communications specialists Stephan Lewandowsky and John Cook — both of whom have spent years studying conspiracist thinking particularly in regard to climate change denialism — have produced a handbook on the hallmarks of conspiracy theories.”

  4. Why is it that no credit is given to my sunshine blogger, the champion of no-privacy and character assassination gossip? I demand a statement from McHenry County State’s Attorney on this. Stay tuned…tic, tock, tic, tock, tic, tock, hug a blogger, tic, tock, tic, tock, tic, tock, meeeeeeoooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwww…

  5. “You cannot even imagine what is coming.”

    But Cindy knows…

    Very telling the gentleman in the video twists the words of the “sick” document to make it sound much worse.

    I’m not arguing it’s not horrific but he lies about it’s content.

    He talks about the 86 out of 88 children who were rescued from the sex trade.

    He says that the report states they had involvement with
    Child Protective Services or other name given prior to being trafficked.

    That would be expected.

    I don’t think good parents sell their kids or abandon them to sex traffickers.

    But the gentleman takes this to mean that they were sold by the department.

    That is not what it says.

    Nice job of fear mongering.

    I don’t like it but as usual the conspiracy person lies and extrapolates to absurdity.

    I have a family member caring for sick people with the virus after being sick himself and it bothers me to see this garbage.

    The self righteous,”only we know the truth” conspiracy nuts are much more dangerous.

    Make no mistake, nobody would take my kids but don’t listen to these crazy people.

  6. Patrick D Kenneally is an expert at the no brainer.

    I’m surprised Patty in my humble opinion who is McHenry County’s version of Chief O’Hara didn’t say something clever and witty like……..

    “Saints preserve us”, “Mother Macree” or “Begora”.

    ” Me men and I are clever, goodness knows. But where the brain is concerned, we’re just not equipped.”

    Jackalope Patty O. Kenneally

  7. These men have disgraced themselves once again.

    They have proven themselves unfit for their respective positions.

    They have trashed freedom for fake security.

    They are precisely the ‘Hollow Men’ T.S. Eliot wrote about.

    Between the conception
    And the creation
    Between the emotion
    And the response
    Falls the Shadow

  8. Regarding the picture of the second guy, I’ve seen more intelligent looking Special Education students.

    Just saying IMO.

  9. According to the data posted on this blog, the majority of the .07% of the McHenry County population who tested positive for Covid-19 are 40 years old or older.

    However, Sheriff Prim and SA Kenneally have just pushed to violate 100% of the citizens’ rights to privacy to, as Kenneally puts it, “sensitive medical information” in order to pander to the police and corrections unions.

    Prim needs the Unions, Kenneally needs Prim, and the citizens rights are not as important as keeping their power.

    If the Sheriff so desperately needs a list of middle-aged and elderly patient-criminals because it is so critical, what about a list of gun owners?

    Wouldn’t that be even more important?

    Is that next?

    Cal, can you post the order so people know exactly how much of their information will be given out?

    Why is it that Lake County, with far more Covid-19 cases than McHenry County, doesn’t have a Sheriff suing their health professionals in the Health Department?

    Why is it that no Fire Departments and only four (4) police departments have joined Sheriff Prim in his law suit?

    Will Algonquin also sue Kane County for the same private medical information?

    If the health department was giving them the addresses already, doesn’t the police system have names at the addresses, why do they need the exact patient if everyone in the house was exposed?

    I am amazed at how quickly the support for the Right to Privacy goes by the way side with so-called “Conservative Republicans” when there are elections to worry about.

    I voted for both of these guys.

    I’m revolted by this disgusting display of politics and its dangerous consequences for our rights.

    It is a “no-brainer”, the citizens’ rights have just been violated and there are those who are fine with that.

    This is a “Temporary Restraining Order” so hopefully at some point a Judge will get the case and bring sanity back.

    The sick are not criminals.

  10. Agreed, bred winner!

    For the safety of all first responders and the public, this was the right thing to do!

  11. Those men should be ashamed of themselves and do should you Bred………. just think of what you are starting. Are you that dense?


    Chmiel set a $10,000 bond, which enabled David Miller to get out of jail for Father’s Day the next day, though he had missed the regular Saturday morning bond hearing.

    Such arrestees normally have to wait in jail two nights until a bond hearing Monday.

    Phone records show the judge had calls that morning with Robert Miller and with Robert Miller’s daughter, Rebecca Lee, a former McHenry County prosecutor, who represented David Miller and also made calls to find a prosecutor willing to handle the bond hearing.

    The law firm where Chmiel worked before becoming a judge had represented the Algonquin Township Road District, and the judge had supported Robert Miller’s election campaign

  13. Had I known that there were these garbage people infected with the virus, calling for any kind of assistance, from our Public Sector hero’s.

    I assure you, I would have encouraged you all to hunt them down and make them suffer for it, every remaining day of their pathetic lives.

  14. Government keeps getting bigger and more powerful.

    We have to bend our knees before these men.

    What happened to the First Amendment guaranteeing the citizenry the RIGHT to “assemble” and “the free practice of religion”?

    Those two GUARANTEED rights are now GONE indefinitely…..and we really don’t know what specific authority is behind this restriction of RIGHTS.

    Police and “officials” are just enforcing a presumed legal restriction.

    We are losing out power.

    Law enforcement and our “authorities” are taking them away – gladly.

  15. The SA’s office has a duty to represent the Department of Health as well as the Sheriff’s Department.

    When a lawyer has a conflict like that, the best course of action is to stay out of the case.

    There should have been outside counsel appointed for the Sheriff’s Department as well as the Department of Health.

    Kenneally really shouldn’t have publicly chosen sides the way he did.

  16. Kenneally, Prim and Wheeler should indeed be ashamed.

    They’ve abused their power now and will do it again and again.

    They act without thinking.

    I will throw their invitations to come to their fundraisers in the trash!

    Actually I was already doing that w/ Paddy Party Boy’s, now I’ll do it with ‘Sheriff’s’ and the Joker’s.

    What sad excuses for leaders.

  17. ‘Wins’ the suit?

    Watch the backlash begin.

    Is Prim eating regarded sandwiches?

    Who’s gonna go to the hospital now.

  18. Prim should be rounding up illegals in this pseudo-crisis.

    They laugh at how they got away with it.

    But they may not be so jovial soon. Even a worm turns.

  19. “Excellent actions by Prim, Kenneally and Judge Chmiel.” Says Bred.

    I’d expect that from scum Angel or the Kvidera.

    Wake up Bred.

  20. I’m already in the pits of hell. Cindy said that and she has never been wrong.

  21. Kenneally For Jackalope Of The Year!

    And it’s only April!

  22. There is great wisdom in the balance of powers in the Constitution.

    In our rush forward to grow as a society we’ve fought these privacy battles before.

    Fundamentally people in large groups do have a right to their privacy but no expectation of anonymity.

    This is parsing pretty fine hairs but there’s an argument, in this case, the LEO’s can protect society and privacy while destroying anonymity.

    If the Department of Health had any enforcement officers an argument could be made the Sheriff overstepped his authority but the two must work together to enforce Public Health and Safety.

    This is another case of whom do you trust in government.

    Government has proven itself untrustworthy over and over and over again.

    This is entirely the fault of the Citizen for abdicating their power for many decades.

    There are peaceful ways a Citizen may make the changes to government necessary to civil society as well as violent ways to remove corrupt actors destroying the ability of a free people to live free.

    For all the bellyaching in the comment sections across America the common denominator is those same malcontents won’t give five dollars or five minutes to a leader they can believe in.

    Expect to be led like the sheep you are until you take responsibility for your Citizenship given to you by hundreds of years of lions spilling their blood to allow you the right to whine without action.

    Want to change the direction of this current governmental grab for information?

    Work like those fighting against the unconvicted murderers of children and perhaps you’ll realize some of their success.

    Or…. Whine here about perceived lost rights and do nothing.

    I wonder how and why Franks gets elected so consistently….

  23. Priest.

    I won’t give up my kids.

    If Prim’s goons come. Watch out!

  24. This is quite terrible.

    So much hysteria.

    I expected more of these ‘leaders.’

    But I guess everything goes out the window because the MSM creates so much fear.

    Nobody likes the elite satanists.

    They gonna have to kill us all.

  25. I have the utmost respect for our officers and first responders.

    They put their life on the line each and everyday to protect us.

    They see more evil than any of us could ever imagine.

    They are spit on, bitten, attacked on a daily basis.

    If knowing who they are going to help has the virus, they can respond with the correct protective gear, which at this time is highly limited.

    If at all possible, they should know they are being exposed.

    You would want the same if it were a family member in this situation.

    Also, I’m sure the people who suspect or do have the virus, they would not want to expose themselves to anyone else.

    I do not feel this is an invasion of privacy in this situation.

    I think the virus is an invasion to everyone. God bless our officers!

  26. Cognizant beclouds the issue.

    The ‘corona virus’ infected are elderly — not the spitting types.

    Since all of the asymptomatics and non-testeds aren’t going to show up on the health dept records, what good is their info?

    Why can’t the cops just assume anyone they deal with is infected and let it go at that.?

    Otherwise they are foolhardy and stupid.

    No, something’s up.

    And I don’t like it one bit.

    This entire scareshow is getting a bit tiresome!

  27. WOW. The best response to this issue has been Cognizant.

    A very reasoned response by Cognizant. How many of these “Goofball” commenters railing against Prim and the judge have sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, husbands, wives, relatives serving as first responders? I suspect none.

  28. IllinoisBlows (I like your blog handle)

    However I do not believe you have been properly informed.

    The virus is not limited to the elderly, not by far.

    And if you ever had the opportunity to work with the elderly, you would realize that they can be some of the meanest people around.

    It’s not necessarily their fault, but dementia, which is common in the elderly can cause some pretty extreme behavior.

    But nonetheless, I stand by my comment and my respect for our first responders, especially our law enforcement

    They face unknown dangers every single time they respond to a call. What could it hurt, just to have a little heads up?

  29. To take the side of the first responders we were hoping Susan, or some health professional, would step in.

    Since the dawn of time those in close contact with the public would be exposed to every disease they carry.

    AIDS, hepatitis, SARS, influenza strains and hundreds of lesser diseases which every emergency room employee, paramedic and cop have been trained to handle without specific knowledge.

    Now comes Corona Virus which is being treated as special by our States Attorney and Sheriff for no other reason than they want this to be so.


    Why the desire to know health info on a disease no more virulent than AIDS or hepatitis?

    Why the desire by both offices not to do their leadership duty of decreasing front line liabilities but increase them.

    Pragmatically the States Attorney and Sheriff are incompetent leaders inasmuch as they clearly admit they haven’t trained their people to safely administer their duties in a wild world and they also have exponentially increased their officers liability in the field.

    In litigious Illinois these dolts have opened every officer, as well as their offices, to law suits from anyone claiming their health information was leaked by and through their specific knowledge.

    Congratulations to them for creating a black hole of financial liability due to their incompetent training and panic driven “leadership”.

  30. Prim and wheeler-Deeler disgust me.

    I was already disgusted by Kenneally and Chmiel’s corruption

    They need to be jettisoned.

  31. The police and police departments have legal and legitimate reasons for knowing the identities of persons infected with the Chinese Virus. Whiners and complainers ought to be more worried and fearful about what has been going on in the private sector about identities. Try putting your phone number into a multitude of search engines on the internet and perhaps be shocked at how much is there. Such as your and spouse name, address, former addresses, ages, occupations, children names and ages, etc. With that, unscrupulous people and entities, in our nation and others, then use this information for fraudulent or risky schemes resulting in the garbage calls to your home or cell phones.

  32. Exactly how does giving up your address and phone number voluntarily to unprotected sites where unscrupulous players can steal them equate to the government deciding it is their “right” to steal your health information?

    They are both unscrupulous thieves.

    The police have exactly zero right to anything health related.

    It is not their purview as backup to our individual rights.

    First responders aren’t heroes.

    They are highly trained individuals doing a job.

    Do it or don’t.

    Their job was created not to usurp our individual responsibilities to keep a civil society but to augment and back up the Citizen in this pursuit.

    Knowing each Citizen’s health information is a usurpation of this deal made in our social contract and completely unnecessary to the safe pursuit of their jobs.

    This isn’t difficult.

  33. Should people be forced to wear a special shirt in public if they have a scratchy throat?

    They could have the virus could they not?

    And for all you people out there that say we know these people have the virus is less dangerous than the people that are infected but don’t know it!

    What should we do with the people that have HIV, Hepatitis B or C or STD’s?

    Do they need a card to say they have it?

    There is a fine line between protection and civil liberties.

  34. To find the legal basis for police departments being able to know the names of persons with a deadly disease refer to:

    Quoted titles, paragraphs shown below are directly from the HIPAA Privacy Rule

    “Summary of the HIPAA Privacy Rule”

    “General Principle for Uses and Disclosures”

    “(5) Public Interest and Benefit Activities. The Privacy Rule permits use and disclosure of protected health information, without an individual’s authorization or permission, for 12 national priority purposes. These disclosures are permitted, although not required, by the Rule in recognition of the important uses made of health information outside of the health care context. Specific conditions or limitations apply to each public interest purpose, striking the balance between the individual privacy interest and the public interest need for this information.”

    Twelve purposes are listed under Paragraph (5), Including:

    “Serious Threat to Health or Safety. Covered entities may disclose protected health information that they believe is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to a person or the public, when such disclosure is made to someone they believe can prevent or lessen the threat (including the target of the threat).”

    The key words are, “to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to a person”, and that person of course being a police officer.

  35. Priest states:

    “The police have exactly zero right to anything health related.”

    Priest is wrong. Judge Chmiel is correct. See my previous post.

  36. That’s the way to argue this point.

    Bringing up non sequiturs is not.

    Well done.

    We differ in opinion and this likely would fail your test on appeal but you did better on your second try.

    The argument against police having this specific information comes down to efficacy on the privacy argument and liability on a pragmatic legal argument.

    Giving the police health information on this current virus fails when asking if the tests are 100% effective, 100% of people in the police jurisdiction have been tested with 100% effective tests and whether the knowledge of one deadly disease over another deadly disease changes LEO procedure.

    The tests aren’t proven 100% effective so may give false positives.

    There aren’t enough tests to adequately cover the hospitals, let alone the entire population of McHenry County so the fractional knowledge gained by LEO’s is totally useless for their perfect protection.

    There is no way this virus is more dangerous than many other diseases LEO’s could come in contact with so it is stretching logic to breaking to say any knowledge, however perfect, of this particular disease is somehow creating a safer work environment for LEO’s than proper training.

    The police need exactly zero knowledge of the health of anyone to perform their duties if properly trained.

    If they are not we sympathize with their desire for safety but do the job, talk to union reps about proper training or quit.

    What Prim and Kenneally have announced to the world is they’re not training their officers properly, don’t care at all about their officers or the taxpayers liability and they are incompetent leaders in any crisis now or future.

    It is now time for the Citizen to take back their law enforcement offices and assign them to competent practitioners.

    What if this was a worse crisis?

    Do you want goofs who think half knowledge beats training, planning and real solutions?

  37. The law permits disclosure of protected health information to first responders under certain circumstances.

    The law does NOT require disclosure, so it would be incorrect to assert that police have a right to the information.

    Clueless Chmiel should have left the decision to the public health professionals.

    There are some judges sitting on the bench in McHenry County who have absolutely no business being there, and Chmiel is a charter member of that group.

  38. @Bred shouldn’t the general public know this as well? Why is the police or first responder above every other person?

  39. @Bred, you posted earlier that you believe those criticizing Prim and Kenneally probably are not, or do not have relatives, that are First Responders.

    So in other words, they don’t have credibility in your eyes due to a lack of experience.

    The Health Board has Doctors, Nurses, and First Responders on it, not to mention all the licensed medical staff in the department itself.

    As such, could you please answer one question.

    How is it that you feel a Politician-Cop and a Politician-Lawyer are more qualified to make decisions about safety related to Covid-19 than the Doctors and Nurses at the Health Department who deal in contagious disease on a daily basis?

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