State's attorney's office not prosecuting former highway chief at this time
The McHenry County state's attorney's office has declined to prosecute former Algonquin Township Highway Commissioner Robert Miller on charges of misuse of government funds and destruction of public records, according to a memorandum issued Thursday.
This statement comes roughly a year after the current Highway Commissioner Andrew Gasser filed a lawsuit alleging Miller used the department funds to purchase personal items like Disneyland tickets and clothing while in his position as a public official. Miller ran the highway department for 24 years until last February, when he was unseated by Gasser in the primary election.
The state's attorney's office also said allegations of corruption were also levied against Gasser by some witnesses in the Miller investigation.
According to the memorandum, the state's attorney's office was given jurisdiction over the criminal investigation last year after both the McHenry County sheriff's office and the Illinois State Police declined.
The FBI did its own investigation into the highway department's credit card use and the spending of its funds on Amazon purchases. The FBI findings were presented to the U.S. attorney's office, which also declined to press charges.
During a seven-month investigation, the McHenry County state's attorney's office "issued dozens of subpoenas, reviewed over 10,000 emails, analyzed thousands of pages of financial and Township documents, and conducted dozens of interviews."
The investigation also was presented to the Illinois attorney general's office to avoid "the appearance of a conflict of interest." The memorandum stated the attorney general's office conducted a three-month investigation of its own, after which it also declined to press charges.
According to the prosecutor's office, new allegations against Miller continue to come in and are being investigated, but the evidence thus far has not been sufficient to prove a criminal case. Prosecutors still could choose to pursue a case against Miller later, the memorandum said.
The memorandum also suggested that the investigation was "undermined" by the large amount of public attention. It further said that outside parties attempted unsuccessfully to persuade prosecutors to drop or continue the investigation, depending upon the party's political persuasion.