Sycamore

Genoa Man Found Not Guilty In Sexual Assault Case

May 13, 2016
DeKalb County

A 41-year old Genoa man has been found not guilty of sexually assaulting a 4-year old girl.  

Stuart Diaz has been in DeKalb County Jail since 2013 under charges of predatory sexual assault.  The Daily-Chronicle reports Diaz finished a 3-day trial yesterday, maintaining his innocence throughout the proceedings. 

Public Defender Tom McCullouch called the charges against Diaz flimsy, and said the prosecution’s reference to “Uncle Stewie,” was an attempt to make his client seem creepy to jurors. 

Give Local DeKalb County Raises Nearly $374,000

May 5, 2016

  Give Local DeKalb County considers its efforts a success despite technical difficulties. 

The charity campaign puts its unofficial donation totals at $270,000.  This figure does not include an additional $104,000 in matching funds. 

Giving hours were extended to yesterday afternoon after online vendor Kimbia’s servers were overloaded by donation traffic.  In total, more than 60 nonprofits took part in the campaign.  

Danielle Guerra / Shaw Media

The Daily Chronicle recently published a two-part series called “Road to Dismissal” examining letters and emails that take a closer look at how DeKalb County State’s Attorney Richard Schmack became convinced that the wrong man was behind bars for the death of Maria Ridulph of Sycamore. Jack McCullough has since been released from prison, but some in the community still question his innocence. Eric Olson is editor of the Daily Chronicle and talks about writing the story.

DeKalb County

A ledger error by the Illinois Department of Revenue has resulted in thousands of taxing districts, including DeKalb County, to be overpaid for their 2014 Personal Property Replacement Taxes.

city of Sycamore

Council members voted unanimously in favor of a system that allows offenders to resolve any citations with an administrative hearing officer. 

This is an attorney who has the ability to act as a judge in various civil cases.  In addition, the system allows parking tickets to be contested through the mail.   Sycamore’s police chief says it will take a few months to get the system up and running.  

Sycamore City Council To Vote On Library Referendum

Apr 12, 2016

  Sycamore’s city council is considering a referendum about its library.  It would have the library become its own governmental unit and taxing body, expanding its services and increasing revenue. 

Currently, the library can only offer free library cards and other discounts to Sycamore residents.  This means individuals in the community such as North Elementary School students may not qualify for these services if their residence is outside city limits. 

The Council will vote on whether to add this referendum to next year’s ballot tonight at 5:30.  

Hearing On McCullough Conviction To Be Held Today

Mar 28, 2016
Susan Stephens / WNIJ

The case of Jack McCullough will be back in DeKalb County Courthouse Today.  He was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2012 for the 1957 kidnapping and murder of 7-year-old Sycamore resident Maria Ridulph.

  

At the time, this was the oldest cold case to be solved in US history. But DeKalb County State's Attorney Richard Schmack said in a released statement newly-permissible evidence suggests that McCullough may be innocent.

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

A major overhaul of DeKalb County’s jail is on target to be finished by the summer of 2018. Sycamore’s city council got an update at its meeting this week on the progress of the $35-million jail expansion.

DeKalb County Jail

A judge is giving a 75-year-old man more time to make a case he deserves a new trial after being convicted of murdering a northern Illinois girl in 1957.

Jack D. McCullough was convicted in 2012 of killing 7-year-old Maria Ridulph of Sycamore. An appellate court upheld his conviction in February.
 
A DeKalb County judge who denied McCullough's handwritten request for post-conviction relief last month has given him until Nov. 30 to build a
stronger case.

DeKalb County Jail

Two prosecution witnesses lied and the prosecution withheld evidence in the cold-case trial of Jack McCullough. That’s according to a new motion filed in DeKalb County Circuit Court by Public Defender Tom McCulloch.

McCullough was convicted in September 2012 of murdering 7-year-old Maria Ridulph of Sycamore in 1957. He has maintained his innocence since his arrest in the Seattle, Wash., area.

The motion, filed last week, asks reconsideration of a motion that McCullough filed in June, seeking relief based on actual innocence.

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