Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Alvarez Says She Convened Koschman Grand Jury, Too

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Anita Alvarez was sworn in, Monday, for another stint as Cook County State's Attorney. 

The honor came on the same day that news broke in the complicated case of R.J. Vanecko, the nephew of former Mayor Richard Daley, who was charged with manslaughter eight years after allegedly delivering a fatal blow to David Koschman outside a Chicago bar. 

Alvarez was urged in 2011 to open an investigation into how the Koschman death was investigated. At the time she said no favoritism was given to Vanecko because he was Daley's nephew, that there was no report or record at the State's Attorney's office about the investigation.

Her comments -- the first about Koschman and Vanecko -- came weeks after the Chicago police closed the case on Vanecko and said that he acted in self-defense when he threw a fatal blow. 

In January of 2012, Alvarez said she would fight an attempt to appoint a special prosecutor to the case, and filed a 50-page motion stating that her office bore no conflict of interest in conduction the investigation. The special prosecutor was ultimately assigned to the case after oral arguments swayed Judge Michael Toomin

Monday, however, Alvarez said there was more to her story: 

"I know what I was supposed to do," Alvarez said responding to a question about the indictment at her swearing in. "I was the only one who asked for an independent investigator. Now I'm free to disclose ... we opened an active grand jury."  

"We were looking into everything, everything, looking at all aspects," she said.

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