Stories by Matt Masterson

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.

Chicago Charter Teachers Announce Tentative Agreement Ending Strike

Chicago International Charter School educators picketed outside CW Henderson on Feb. 6, 2019. (Chicago Tonight)

Classes will resume Tuesday at four Chicago International Charter Schools following a two-week long strike that ended early Monday morning.

19 Exonerees File Federal Lawsuits Against Former Police Sergeant

(Chicago Tonight)

Plaintiffs claim they were framed by disgraced former police Sgt. Ronald Watts and his tactical team at a South Side housing project, and that a “code of silence” allowed it to happen.

Jason Van Dyke’s Wife, Attorneys Demand Answers After Prison Beating

Tiffany Van Dyke, wife of former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke, speaks during a news conference at attorney Daniel Herbert’s office in Chicago on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019. (Ashlee Rezin / Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

“The next time this could happen they could kill him,” Tiffany Van Dyke told the media through tears at a press conference Thursday. “I cannot bury my husband.”

Source: Jason Van Dyke Beaten by Fellow Inmates in Prison

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)

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke was beaten by his fellow inmates shortly after being transferred to an out-of-state prison, a source close to his family confirms.

4 More Cleared in Latest Exonerations Tied to Former Chicago Police Sergeant

Attorney Joel Flaxman, right, stands inside the Leighton Criminal Court Building with Jermaine Coleman, center, and Germain Sims on Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019. (Matt Masterson / Chicago Tonight)

Four men were exonerated of false drug convictions Wednesday, joining more than 60 others who’ve been falsely convicted and later exonerated in cases related to former Chicago Police Sgt. Ronald Watts.

Attorney General, Special Prosecutors Asking for Review of Jason Van Dyke 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)

Illinois’ top legal officer and the special prosecutor in charge of the Jason Van Dyke murder trial are challenging the legality of the prison sentence handed down to the former Chicago police officer.

Lawsuit Claims Acero Charter Violated Special Education Law, Retaliated Against Whistleblower

(Google Maps)

A former reading specialist at a Chicago charter school claims she faced retaliation and termination last year after voicing concerns about special education students she believes were illegally denied proper supports.

CPS Teacher Removed After Allegedly Bringing in Friend to Beat Student

(Don Harder / Flickr)

“I want my mama,” the 9-year-old victim pleaded as he was being beaten with a belt inside his school's bathroom, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday. His attacker told him, “I am your mama.”

State Board of Education Rolling Out New Proficiency Exam Next Month

(Pexels)

Illinois is moving away from the PARCC assessment, but students might not notice much of a difference when the Illinois Board of Education rolls out its new federally mandated exam this spring.

Teachers at 4 Chicago Charter Schools Go On Strike

Chicago International Charter School teachers strike on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019. (@AFTunion / Twitter)

Educators say Chicago International Charter School leadership refuses to use a $36 million surplus on staff raises or classroom improvements. Around 2,200 students are being impacted by the strike.

Van Dyke Prosecutor Joseph McMahon, Attorney General Discussing Sentence Challenge

The lead prosecutor in the Jason Van Dyke murder trial says he’s spoken with the state’s top legal officer about the possibility of challenging the prison sentence handed down to the former Chicago police officer.