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Article posted: 3/14/2013 4:29 PM

Lake County prosecutors to be reorganized into new, specialized divisions

Mike Nerheim

Mike Nerheim

 
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Lake County's criminal prosecutors will be divided into divisions that focus on specific aspects of the law, such as gangs and cybercrime, officials announced Thursday.

The reorganization of the state's attorney's office will begin April 1. It follows interviews State's Attorney Michael Nerheim conducted with every employee.

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"Armed with the information I needed, I was able to place attorneys and staff in positions they were qualified for, but more importantly had a strong interest in pursuing," Nerheim said in a news release.

Previously, all felony cases were handled under one division. The new felony divisions are:

• Narcotics and gangs.

• General felony.

• Cybercrime and white-collar crime.

• Specialty courts for veterans and people with mental health or drug issues.

• Specialized victims and investigations, which will focus on domestic violence, sex crimes and some homicides.

A training division will be created, too.

The overhaul is the third significant change Nerheim has brought to the office since his election in November 2012. He also launched a case review board to reconsider possible wrongful convictions and a citizens advisory board.

"The citizens of Lake County need to know they can count on the prosecutor's office to be fair and just," Nerheim said.

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