Dishonesty, Deceit, Mike Madigan, and Judy Cates

by James M. Odom, Esq.
Senior Policy Analyst, The Illinois Family Institute

“You shall appoint judges and officers in all your towns…they shall judge the people with righteous judgment.” Deuteronomy 16:18

Justice David Overstreet is running for retention for Illinois Supreme Court in the 5th District. By the deceitful accusations in her advertising against him,  his opponent, Judy Cates, has demonstrated her partisan political bias by knowingly misrepresenting a decision in order to follow the party line and steal your vote by whatever means necessary.

“Justice, and only justice, you shall follow, that you may live and inherit the land that the Lord your God is giving you.”  Deuteronomy 16:20

On the other hand, the very ruling which she uses to wrongly anger voters is just what demonstrates that Justice Overstreet is a just judge, following the rule of law.

“You shall not pervert justice. You shall not show partiality…” Deuteronomy 16:19

Imagine that you are a Christian homeschool parent and are one day accused of child sexual abuse.  It really isn’t hard to imagine these days.  Your child is taken away, and you are suddenly thrust into the nebulous criminal justice system.  You don’t have much money, so are represented by a public defender and you also become ill.  While imprisoned at the hospital (with guards), you are unable to attend your own trial, see your accusers testify, testify on your own behalf, or participate in your defense.

The short answer is that the whole trial was bad because of the exclusion of the defendant.  This is not an error of the appellate court (Overstreet), but a failure of the trial court, which caused the release and need for re-trial of the defendant.  It doesn’t invoke double-jeopardy, so the prosecution is free to retry (and any failure to do so would be a failure of the prosecutor to do his or her duty) on the same evidence.  If Overstreet’s court didn’t overturn the 6/22/2020 decision, the Illinois Supreme Court would have, making such a failure to re-prosecute more likely. And Judy Cates knows this very well.

This is why the rule of law is as it is.  This is why the decision was unanimous.  This is the most basic of protections of individual liberties: certain inalienable rights, endowed to us by our Creator.

Justice Overstreet has proven by this very decision Cates attacks him on, that he has the self-discipline to overcome the tendency to rule based on personal preference, but instead to follow the rule of law. Which is exactly the role of a judge!

The relevant portion of the holding of the 5th Appellate District of Illinois in THE PEOPLE OF ILLINOIS v. JERAD W. PEOPLES (June 2020), in which Justice Overstreet concurred was that:

Where the trial court was presented with information of the defendant’s whereabouts on the morning of trial, the trial court’s decision to proceed to trial without defendant’s presence and without conducting an adequate inquiry into evidence before it that the defendant was hospitalized, constituted an abuse of discretion.

Where the defendant’s hospital medical records support the existence of preexisting and acute psychiatric diagnoses coupled with an acute acetaminophen overdose, the defendant presented sufficient information supporting his claim that his absence was not willful.

We vacate the defendant’s conviction and sentence because his absence was not willful, and the trial court abused its discretion in failing to conduct an adequate inquiry.

For the reasons stated in this order, we vacate the defendant’s conviction and sentence and remand this case to the Marion County circuit court for a new trial.

If the evidence (which didn’t change as a result of the decision) still supports his conviction, Jerad Peoples will be tried and convicted again, but because of courageous judges like David Overstreet, and not cowards who knowingly and publicly accuse good judges of wrong-doing, the defendant will not be convicted of a crime without a fair and impartial trial. Something that our law demands.

This action also prevents further judicial scrutiny, potentially overturning the conviction later, when it will be more difficult to convict.

Shame on candidate Judy Cates, a judge who understands all of this and would have undoubtedly joined the same decision (or should have), to lie by wrongly sensationalizing a correct decision to gain votes from voters who would likely not understand the case.  Shame on the Democrats, whose objective is to overthrow the great American system of government so they can rule with their Marxist political ideology.  Shame on Mike Madigan, whose campaign coffers fund such deceptive, negative ads.

Someone who would run such ads in a judicial race is not worthy to ever have the title “Justice” attached to her name.

Vote for Justice David Overstreet for Illinois Supreme Court if you’re in the 5th district!  Ignore and correct those (even conservatives and Christians) who have been tricked by these ads.  Persuade your 100 closest friends in the 5th District to do likewise.

This is perhaps the most important judicial contest in this election!

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