Thornton School Board Chief Ousted Over 30-Year-Old Felony

Wednesday, Oct 23, 2013  |  Updated 9:17 PM CDT
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A Cook County judge ousted the Thornton Township High School District 205 board president Wednesday over a 30-year-ld felony.

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A Cook County judge ousted the Thornton Township High School District 205 board president Wednesday over a 30-year-ld felony.

Kenneth Williams was declared ineligible to hold his position as board president due to a felony conviction for financial fraud in Indiana in 1985.

Williams was first elected to the board in 2009 and was re-elected in April, despite his publicized conviction.

Williams was targeted in a lawsuit prompted by Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez, who cited Illinois law which states a person convicted of an “infamous crime” cannot serve as an elected official.

Judge Rita Novak determined that Williams’ conviction “constitutes an infamous crime” and disqualifies him from holding his position on the board.

Williams accused Alvarez of “selective targeting and prosecution of African-American leaders” and said the ruling undermines the voice and vote of the people.

He said he intends to continue running the board and plans to have the ruling reconsidered.

“Our legal team will be diligently working to have this ruling reconsidered to allow the people’s vote to count and the work of the district to go forth,” he said in a statement. “During this process, I am still and will remain in the position school board president to do the work the voters of Thornton Township District 205 overwhelming elected and entrusted me to do.”
 

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