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Stories by Matt Masterson

Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Jason Van Dyke’s Prison Sentence

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke enters the courtroom for his sentencing hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019. (Antonio Perez / Chicago Tribune / Pool)

The Illinois Supreme Court’s decision comes one month after the state filed its request. With its ruling, former police Officer Jason Van Dyke will continue serving his 81-month prison sentence.

North Suburban Man Gets 5-Year Sentence for Running $1M Ponzi Scheme

(Thomas Hawk / Flickr)

Richard K. Booy, 50, pleaded guilty last year to one count of mail fraud. Prosecutors say he swindled more than $1 million from 15 victims between 2012 and 2016.

CTU President Tells Teachers to ‘Start Saving’ Ahead of Potential Strike

CTU President Jesse Sharkey outlines his union’s contract demands in a press conference inside City Hall on Jan. 15, 2019. (Chicago Tonight)

Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey suggests the union’s rank-and-file members save at least 10 percent of each paycheck “to make sure we can stand strong on the picket line.”

Police: Woman Attacked, Sexually Assaulted in Rogers Park

(Chicago Tonight)

The 31-year-old victim said she was grabbed and assaulted while walking southbound on the 6600 block of North Clark Street on Wednesday evening.

Jussie Smollett Pleads Not Guilty to New Felony Charges

Jussie Smollett appears at a hearing for judge assignment with his attorney Tina Glandian, left, at the Leighton Criminal Court Building on Thursday, March 14, 2019. (E. Jason Wambsgans / Pool / Chicago Tribune)

The “Empire” actor entered the plea after his case was assigned to a new judge. He faces more than a dozen charges stemming from a staged attack he allegedly planned against himself.

CPS Watchdog: Pre-K Billing Mismanagement Cost District $2 Million

Chicago Public Schools missed out on as much as $2 million in pre-K payments over the past four school years due to a combination of errors, uncollected tuition and employee fraud, according to the district’s internal watchdog.

35 Charged in Connection to Chicago-Based Heroin Trafficking Ring

Dirksen United States Courthouse (Ken Lund / Flickr)

“Operation Road Rage,” as the investigation was known, led to the seizure of 1 kilogram of heroin, as well as approximately $100,000 in cash, five firearms and four vehicles.

‘Empire’ Actor Jussie Smollett Facing 16 New Charges

Booking photo of Jussie Smollett (Chicago Police Department)

A grand jury has returned 16 additional disorderly conduct charges against the actor following an alleged attack hoax, according to the Cook County State’s Attoorney’s Office.

Aurora Shooting Survivor Files Lawsuit Against Illinois State Police

Mourners place flowers at the crosses outside of the Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora, Illinois, on Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in memory of the five employees killed on Friday. (Jeff Knox / Daily Herald via AP)

Timothy Williams was shot three times during the Feb. 15 attack at a manufacturing facility in Aurora. He believes that attack would have been prevented if state police had “followed their internal protocols.”

Court Ruling on Jason Van Dyke Sentence Challenge Expected Next Week

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke and his attorney Daniel Herbert, left, attend Van Dyke’s sentencing hearing on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019. (Antonio Perez / Chicago Tribune / Pool)

The former Chicago police officer is currently slated to get out of prison in 2022. But an upcoming decision from Illinois’ Supreme Court could directly impact that timeline.

6 Men Charged in Trio of Harvey Corruption Cases

(Loco Steve / Wikimedia Commons)

The defendants include two Harvey police officers, a private consultant to the city and two cousins with “high-ranking relatives” inside the city’s government.

Cicero Police Officer Alleges Sexual Harassment, Discrimination in Lawsuit

Town of Cicero (Google Maps)

Nadia Bull, an auxiliary police officer in a western suburb of Chicago, claims her department “turned a blind eye” after she was forced into sex and sexually harassed by her superiors for years.

Ald. Willie Cochran Set to Plead Guilty in Federal Corruption Case

The outgoing 20th Ward alderman is set to appear at a change-of-plea hearing on March 21. He was charged in 2016 with 15 federal charges including fraud, bribery and extortion.

Chicago Sergeant Claims Retaliation After Refusing to Participate in Alleged Cover-Up

A veteran Chicago police sergeant claims he was demoted after refusing to approve a report he believed would falsely justify the officer-involved shooting of an unarmed teen in 2017.

Teen Charged in Northside College Prep Student’s Murder

(Chicago Police Department)

Luis Castejon faces a charge of first-degree murder in the shooting Monday of Emanuel Gallegos, a 17-year-old junior at one of the city’s elite public high schools.

Another Transgender Inmate Seeking Transfer from IDOC Prison

(Thomas Hawk / Flickr)

Attorneys for inmate Janiah Monroe say she suffers from PTSD and has been a constant target for sexual harassment and abuse inside her all-male prison.

Police Hoping to Identify Suspect in High School Student’s Murder

(Chicago Police Department)

Authorities on Wednesday released photos of an offender they believe was involved in the fatal shooting of Emanuel Gallegos outside a high school Monday evening in the Old Irving Park neighborhood.

Early Totals Show Older Voters Driving Election Traffic

(Chicago Tonight)

More than half the ballots cast as of 6 p.m. Tuesday came from voters who were 55 or older, according to unofficial totals from the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners.

R. Kelly Pleads Not Guilty to 10 Sexual Abuse Charges

In this courtroom sketch, R&B singer R. Kelly appears before Cook County Associate Judge Lawrence Flood with his attorney Steve Greenberg on Monday, Feb. 25, 2019, at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse. (Credit: Tom Gianni)

The R&B superstar posted $100,000 bail Monday and walked out of Cook County Jail, where he spent the weekend after being charged in four separate cases late last week.

R. Kelly Held on $1 Million Bond

R. Kelly surrenders to authorities at Chicago First District police station on Friday, Feb. 22, 2019. (Tyler LaRiviere / Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

A Cook County judge on Saturday ordered R. Kelly held on $1 million bond, a day after the R&B star was indicted by a grand jury on 10 charges of aggravated criminal sexual abuse. 

R. Kelly Charged With Aggravated Sexual Abuse

This June 13, 2008 file photo shows R&B singer R. Kelly, arriving at the Cook County Criminal Court Building in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

Controversial Chicago R&B singer R. Kelly is facing a slew of sexual abuse charges after a video purporting to show him sexually assaulting an underage girl was turned over to Cook County investigators.

Anita Alvarez to Kim Foxx: ‘Do Your Job’

Cook County state’s attorney recused herself this week from Smollett case

Former Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Sept. 8, 2016.

Former Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez this week blasted her successor Kim Foxx for not “doing her job” after Foxx recused herself from the investigation into claims made by “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett.

Police: Jussie Smollett’s Staged Attack a ‘Slap in the Face’ to Chicago

CPD superintendent says actor took advantage of “pain and anger and racism” in Chicago for his own benefit

Booking photo of Jussie Smollett (Chicago Police Department)

“Empire” actor Jussie Smollett took advantage of the “pain and anger and racism” in Chicago in order to promote his own career, police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said Thursday.

‘Empire’ Actor Jussie Smollett Charged with Disorderly Conduct

In this Aug. 8, 2017 file photo, Jussie Smollett participates in the “Empire” panel during the FOX Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan / Invision / AP, File)

Hours after Chicago police deemed him a “suspect” in his own alleged attack, “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett has been charged with disorderly conduct, according to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office.

Van Dyke’s Attorneys Claim Sentence Challenge Would Open ‘Pandora’s Box’

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke and his attorney Daniel Herbert, right, listen as the judge describes how he’ll be sentenced on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019. (Antonio Perez / Chicago Tribune / Pool)

Attorneys for former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke believe the 81-month sentence he received last month for the fatal shooting of black teen Laquan McDonald conforms with Illinois law and should not reviewed by the state Supreme Court.