O’Shea cruises to victory in DuPage judge race

DuPage County Board member Pat O’Shea trounced two sitting judges Tuesday for a shot at the bench in the 18th Judicial Circuit.

With all 748 precincts reporting, the Lombard attorney led a three-way race by 10 percentage points. O’Shea captured 37,969 votes, or 42 percent, to defeat Circuit Judge Bob Gibson, who had 28,791 votes, and Associate Judge Brian McKillip, who had 23,024, according to unofficial results.

The candidates were vying for a circuit post previously held by Judge Perry Thompson. O’Shea did not return messages seeking comment on his victory.

The race leading up to the primary was contentious at times, with the Gibson and O’Shea campaigns accusing each other of embellishing their records. O’Shea also picked up some negative publicity when his son was arrested recently on cocaine-dealing charges.

O’Shea is DuPage’s longest-serving county board member, first elected in 1990. A former chairman of the York Township Republican Committee and an attorney for 33 years, his private-practice work has focused largely on criminal defense, trials, appeals and civil cases.

O’Shea will go up against Democrat and Bolingbrook attorney Alice Wilson, who was unopposed in the primary, in November.

Gibson, of Naperville, is a former civil attorney who was appointed circuit judge by the Illinois Supreme Court in August after Thompson retired. Since then, he’s worked in foreclosure court, where he instituted a program meant to help struggling homeowners navigate the system and possibly save their homes.

McKillip, of Warrenville, was a prosecutor for the village of Glen Ellyn for 15 years and also worked in private practice handling civil and criminal matters. He was appointed associate judge nearly 13 years ago and, since then, has overseen a variety of court calls, from family law and traffic to criminal misdemeanors and domestic relations.