What Happens to Complaints Against Judges?

On an average year the Illinois Judicial Inquiry Board gets close to 450 complaints, but a step by step walk through of the complaint process shows that a majority of cases are dismissed before any investigation into the complaint occurs. Of the minority of complaints that do get investigated, most are dismissed or dealt with confidentially. Even fewer complaints are made known to the public.

William G. Schwartz, Jackson County Circuit Court Judge

First District Circuit Judge of Jackson County, was appointed as associate judge in 1986, then appointed to a vacancy on the circuit court before winning election to that seat in 1992. In 2001, the Judicial Inquiry Board filed a complaint over Schwartz’ decision to bar Southern Illinois Law School students from serving in his courtroom, after his stepson’s application to enroll there was denied.