Qualifications of Demetri Tsilimigras for Judge

Demertri Tsilimigras

Besides the difficulty of pronouncing his last name if you don’t know the “T” is silent, the biggest hit on the candidacy of McHenry County judicial candidate Demetri Tsilimigras that I have heard is that he does not have enough experience in the courtroom.

Demetri addressed that issue in his fundraiser last month partially by explaining that his experience was not limited to McHenry County, but included time in Michigan and, more recently, for the Kane County State’s Attorney’s Office.

I found particularly interesting his statement that he had been certified by the Illinois Supreme  Court to that part of the bar allowed to participate in murder trials.

Demetri Tsilimigras makes case for his election at his Woodstock fundraiser.

So, I contacted the Illinois Supreme Court and discovered that the Capital Litigation Trial Bar was discontinued in February, 2013, presumably because the death penalty is no longer a possibility in Illinois.

If one goes to Rule 714 in the Supreme Court Rules, one can see the qualifications that attorneys had to have before being allowed to participate in murdrer trials.

Here are a couple of the requirements:

  • Be an experienced and active trial practitioner with at least five years of criminal litigation experience within the last seven years.
  • Have prior experience as lead or co-counsel in no fewer than eight felony jury trials which were tried to completion, at least two of which were murder prosecutions and at least two trials must have been tried within the last seven years; and either
    1. have completed at least 12 hours of training in the preparation and trial of capital cases in a course approved by the Illinois Supreme Court, within two years prior to making application for admission; or
    2. have substantial familiarity with and extensive experience in the use of expert witnesses, and forensic and medical evidence including, but not limited to, mental health, pathology and DNA profiling evidence.

I asked for the names of attorneys from McHenry County who had been admitted to Capital Litigation Trial Bar.  Their names and date of certification follow:

  • Henry Sugden, III (2003)
  • James McAuliff, Jr. (2004)
  • Tiffany Davis (2005)
  • Danial Hofman (2006)
  • Donna Kelly (2007)
  • Michael Combs (2007)
  • Demetri Tsilimigras (2008)
  • Philip Hiscock (2008)
  • Ryan Blackney (2009)

The only current judge on the list is Tiffany Davis (appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court and running for a six-year term).

Tsilimigras is the one so designated in his four-person race for a six-year term as judge.


Qualifications of Demetri Tsilimigras for Judge — 16 Comments

  1. There are enough bad judges out there that it would be great to see Demetri break the good ole club network!

    He has the qualifications, intelligence, respect to others to be a great judge!

  2. He hasn’t tried a case in more than 10 years????

    Or, even argued a motion?

  3. Where do you get that from, Jim?

    He is an active lawyer in the criminal division of the State’s Attorney’s office.

  4. Prosecution involves many layers. Some never argue in the courtroom but work behind the scenes.

    Judges vote in the poll as well and they may not have been able to see Demetrie actively prosecuting.

  5. Yes, some lawyers do not go to court.

    Why are you saying this lawyer is lying when he says he does?

    I’ve seen him working in courtrooms.

  6. Hilarious. Attorney’s did not want to get certified or they would have been forced to try Murder cases because there were so few murder qualified, and the probability of getting paid for the work was zero.

    They were going to ax the rule BEFORE the death penalty was taken off the table, because so few qualified.

    This is essentially a prosecutor list … except Hofmann.

    He would have made a GREAT judge.

  7. Lastly, when does trial experience by a lawyer make you a good judge.

    How we made that leap has not been well explained.

    Why is he better than the others.

    And Please nobody from Algonquin respond.

  8. I hardly knew anything about any of the candidates for Judge.

    I do now!

    Taking each candidate at their own words, and actions, during this campaign is very revealing.

    Ignoring the attacks, and speculation by opponent’s, but focusing on displayed character.

    I’m confident that Demetri, and Tiffany have the experience, and demonstrate the temperament that qualifies them as fair, and competent Judges.

  9. He’s honest, clean. I don’t think he@d do anything questionable, or corrupt.

    He is patient, fair, has a great head on his shoulders and he’s the temperament, and is thorough.

  10. @Jason I highly doubt that! But since you have absolutely zero proof lets do the speculation.

    Wilbrandt took off the gloves first sending a hit piece against McClellan.

    So if I thought things through I would think McClellan would go after Wilbrandt.

    Seems more like the logical way to go especially since Franks is probably backing McClellan in the background.

  11. @anyanswers speculates that Jason has speculated. That is double special.

  12. Oh, and back to the original post, EVERYONE (except Sugden and Hofmann) on that list were qualified because they were told to by their bosses, none of them sought the qualification as evidence of some ability.

    That isn’t any special designation, it was just a qualification required by the job.

    Government workers get certified, pigs eat at troughs.

    To suggest this represents some special recognition is a very liberal idea.

    Government is not the source of ability or recognition of ability.

    This is surprising from people who claim to be conservative.

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