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Government Lawyers Newsletter
The newsletter of the ISBA’s Standing Committee on Government Lawyers

November 2003, vol. 5, no. 2

Case law update

Doe v. Illinois Department of Professional Regulation, No. 1-02-1045 (1st District, June 26, 2003). The circuit court erred in enjoining the Department of Professional Regulation from disclosing plaintiff’s mental health records without his release, because section 38 of the Medical Practice Act of 1987 (225 ILCS 60/38 (West 2000)) and section 7(a) of the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act (740 ILCS 110/7(a) (West 2000)) authorize the use of a patient’s redacted mental health records without his consent in a disciplinary proceeding against the patient’s psychiatrist.

In re Abandonment of Wells Located in Illinois by Leavell, No. 5-02-0220 (5th District, August 14, 2003). The circuit court erred when it dismissed plaintiff’s complaint challenging the administrative decision of the Department of Natural Resources that plaintiff’s oil wells were abandoned. Plaintiff failed to provide for the issuance of summons within 35 days of the administrative decision as required by section 3-103 of the Illinois Administrative Review Law (735 ILCS 5/3-103 (West 2000)), arguing that summons did not issue because it was not notified of the administrative hearing. The court noted that attempting to serve notice by certified mail is not sufficient to meet due process requirements. Cause remanded for further proceedings.

Constitutional law

Canel v. Topinka, No. 1-01-2069 (1st District, June 30, 2003). Trial court erred when it dismissed class action complaint that section 15 of the Uniform Disposition of Unclaimed Property Act (765 ILCS 1025/15 (West 2000)) violated the Illinois Constitution of 1970 (Ill. Const. 1970, art. I, §15) and deprived the plaintiff of his Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights under the United States Constitution (U.S. Const. amends. V, XIV), thus violating 42 U.S.C. §1983 (42 U.S.C. §1983 (1996)). The Unclaimed Property Act is not an escheat statute, thus the state does not acquire title to property, it merely holds it as custodian for the owner. Therefore, provisions in the Unclaimed Property Act allowing the state to retain dividends on unclaimed property constitutes a taking. However, the amount of compensation due plaintiff for keeping dividends earned on abandoned stock must be determined by the trial court.

People v. McGee, No. 1-02-2637 (1st District, June 30, 2003). Defendant was properly convicted of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon (720 ILCS 5/24-1.6 (West 2000)), and defendant failed to prove that statute violated either the proportionate penalties (Ill. Const. 1970, art. 1, §11) or the substantive due process clauses of Illinois Constitution.

Criminal law

People v. Vasquez, No. 1-01-1131 (1st District, May 13, 2003). A defendant, whose timely-filed direct appeal is dismissed under the fugitive rule, does not waive the right to a direct review, but may petition for reinstatement of his appeal upon his return. Defendant here tried to resurrect his appeal by filing a series of motions in the trial court. The trial court lacked jurisdiction to consider the motions filed after defendant’s return. The void orders do not cloak the appellate court with jurisdiction to reach the merits of defendant’s appeal. The proper procedure for defendant to pursue his direct appeal rights is to petition the appellate court to reinstate his earlier-filed appeal. That appeal is held in abeyance under the fugitive rule “unless and until” defendant returns.

People v. Burdunice, No. 3-01-0776 (3rd District, May 29, 2003). Defendant was convicted of the unauthorized delivery of electronic contraband (cellular telephone batteries) into a penal institution by an employee (720 ILCS 5/31A-1.2(c)(1), (4)(xi) (West 1998)). On appeal, defendant argued that the Act under which she was convicted, Public Act 89-688, effective June 1, 1997, violates the single subject rule of the Illinois Constitution, and, therefore, her conviction was void. The appellate court concluded that Public Act 89-688 violates the single subject rule of the Illinois Constitution. Curative legislation has not been passed. Defendant’s conviction was reversed as a matter of law.

In re Robert S., No. 2-02-0262 (2nd District, June 30, 2003). Although hearing on petition to involuntarily administer psychotropic medication was held outside of the statutorily prescribed time frame, the delays were almost exclusively at the request of or otherwise attributable to the respondent. Further, it was not an error under section 2-107.1 of the Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code (405 ILCS 5/2-107.1 (West 2000)) for the court to appoint a named doctor or a “designee whose license and credentials permit” to administer psychotropic medication. The trial court properly applied provisions of the Criminal Code (725 ILCS 5/104-18 (West 2000)) to criminal detainee found unfit to stand trial, and was not required to provide criminal defense attorney with notice of petition.

People v. Morales, No. 1-02-1566 (1st District, August 19, 2003). Trial court properly dismissed defendant’s post conviction petition seeking to vacate his guilty plea and sentence for aggravated battery with a firearm, because of single subject rule challenge to PA 86-890, as patently without merit.

Criminal counsel

People v. Graham, No. 86382 (June 19, 2003). Defendant was convicted in the circuit court of three counts of first degree murder and was sentenced to death. Defendant appealed. While his appeal was pending, defendant’s death sentence was commuted to natural life imprisonment. The Supreme Court held that: (1) commutation of defendant’s sentence rendered defendant’s sentencing- phase issues moot; (2) defense counsel’s action of going to the police station on the night of defendant’s arrest to “see about” a prosecution witness that was being questioned did not create per se conflict of interest, because counsel had no attorney-client relationship with the prosecution witness; (3) state’s witness’ testimony and prosecutor’s closing arguments, which referred to defendant’s exercise of his right to remain silent after his arrest, were not so fundamental as to constitute plain error; and (4) defendant was not denied effective assistance of counsel because of defense counsel’s failure to object to witness’ inadmissible testimony, as failure to object does not necessarily establish substandard performance.

People v. Ledesma, No. 93628 (June 19, 2003). Court concluded that police could properly stop defendants’ vehicles after anonymous 911 tipster reported having inadvertently overheard a cellular telephone conversation over police scanner that an illegal drug transaction was to occur at a specific location. Defendants failed to establish that anonymous tip about possible drug deal violated either state eavesdropping statute or federal wiretap statute, so as to require suppression of evidence seized in traffic stops. Information provided by anonymous caller carried sufficient indicia of reliability to justify forcible stop. Defendant gave a valid general consent permitting police to search the vehicle and its contents, which was never limited nor withdrawn. Motion to suppress was properly denied.

People v. Rosemond, No. 1-00-1483 (1st District, May 14, 2003). Testimony of defendant and defendant’s other evidence of circumstances of interrogation and confession were not so suggestive of coercion that polygraph results could be admitted under narrow People v. Jefferson, 184 Ill. 2d 486, 493, 705 N.E.2d 56 (1998), exception. Therefore, trial court abused its discretion in admitting polygraph evidence and by giving jury instructions compounding the error. Further, although defense attorney’s cross examination of witness to elicit hearsay testimony of defendant’s other crimes was not sound, defendant did not establish prejudice prong of Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 695, 80 L. Ed. 2d 674, 698, 104 S. Ct. 2052, 2068-69 (1984), test for ineffective assistance of counsel.

People v. Grant, No. 1-01-1134 (1st District, May 22, 2003). Defendant was properly convicted of unlawful use of a weapon based on testimony of officer that she saw defendant reach back to rear seat of vehicle in which defendant was passenger and that officer subsequently saw loaded gun at location in vehicle where defendant was reaching. Further, failure to call driver of vehicle, who, according to police testimony at suppression hearing, claimed that gun belonged to him, did not constitute ineffective assistance of counsel. Additionally, defense counsel’s dual representation of defendant and co-defendant in joint trial did not deprive defendant of conflict-free counsel. Unlawful use of weapon statute did not violate due process by requiring only knowing possession.

People v. Arroyo, No. 2-00-0498 (2nd District, June 2, 2003). On reconsideration pursuant to supervisory order of the Supreme Court, the appellate court found that prosecutor’s improper comments during opening statements, in which prosecutor stated that accomplice was serving a 20-year sentence for her involvement in murder offense and would testify, and stated that accomplice was convicted of being get-a-way driver in regard to murder offense, did not substantially prejudice defendant. Defense counsel’s failure to call accomplice as a witness even though accomplice had testified at defendant’s first trial for murder offense that other perpetrator committed offense, was not deficient for purposes of ineffective assistance claim. Circuit court judgment affirmed.

People v. Gandy, No. 5-02-0015 (5th District, June 26, 2003). Defendant was denied effective assistance of counsel in connection with second post-conviction petition by counsel’s failure to file Rule 651(c) affidavit coupled with failure to file motion to amend pro se post conviction petition or respond to state’s motion to dismiss after indicating intent to do so.

People v. Daly, No. 4-01-0575, 4-01-0576, 4-01-0577, 4-01-0657, 4-02-0823 cons. (4th District, June 30, 2003). Defendants were denied effective representation of counsel due to trial counsel’s prior representation of a confidential informant, who was the state’s chief witness against defendant.

People v. Young, No. 4-01-0627 (4th District, June 30, 2003). Defendant, prisoner at correctional facility convicted of aggravated battery, was not denied effective assistance of counsel by failure to object to prior criminal history being admitted, it being impossible to keep from jury in light of defendant’s incarceration, evidence that defendant was in segregation or fact that correctional officer on which defendant spat was five months pregnant. Further, court was not required to give Rule 401(a) admonitions between finding of guilty and sentencing before allowing defendant to proceed pro se. In addition, trial court was not required to conduct investigation into allegations of ineffective representation because all of the claimed misconduct occurred in trial in the presence of the judge.

People v. Stewart, No. 5-02-0427 (5th District, July 30, 2003). Prosecutor’s remarks, which implied that everyone who worked for a conviction would be betrayed in the absence of a guilty verdict, were improper. However, the defendant failed to properly preserve the issue in his post-trial motion, and it did not constitute plain error because the evidence of defendant’s guilt was so overwhelming.

People v. Friend, No. 2-01-0101 (2nd District, July 8, 2003). Defendant was deprived of effective assistance of counsel when trial court failed to investigate allegations of ineffective counsel raised in defendant’s pro se motion to withdraw his guilty plea and appoint new counsel to represent him.

People v. Dutton, No. 5-01-0963 (5th District, July 31, 2003). Defendant, who pled not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of attempted first-degree murder and aggravated battery under a plea agreement whereby she would be referred to Department of Mental Health for evaluation, was not deprived of effective counsel by attorney’s comments at disposition hearing after evaluation recommended commitment, that he believed detention was in defendant’s best interests.

People v. Rucker, No. 1-01-3617 (1st District, August 19, 2003). Defendant’s post sentencing pro se petition containing bald allegation that his counsel failed to adequately represent him and asking for reduction of sentence did not qualify as exception to rule that pro se motions by represented defendants should not be considered by the court, and record is not sufficient to establish ineffective assistance of counsel. Further, evidentiary stipulation was sufficient to waive foundation requirement for drug tests. Stipulated evidence that substance tested positive for presence of cocaine was sufficient to support conviction.


People v. Moss, No. 91012, 91013, 91044, 91046, 91047, 91048, 91049, 91050, 91051, 91052, 91328 cons. (June 19, 2003). Public Act 91-404, effective January 1, 2000, codified at 720 ILCS 5/33A-1 (West 2000) imposing mandatory 15-year and 20-year sentence enhancements for possession of a firearm and personal discharge of a firearm, respectively, in commission of armed robbery, aggravated kidnapping, and aggravated vehicular hijacking violated proportionate penalties clause of state Constitution (Ill. Const. 1970, art. I, §11). Mandatory sentence enhancement of 25 years for armed robbery in cases involving personal discharge of a firearm causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, permanent disfigurement, or death, did not violate proportionate penalties clause. Mandatory sentence enhancement based on use of firearm during commission of armed robbery did not result in double enhancement and did not result in multiple punishments for same offense in violation of Double Jeopardy Clause.

People v. Harth, No. 2-02-0320 (2nd District, June 19, 2003). Defendant was not deprived of due process by court’s allowance of four-page victim impact statement introduced at sentencing hearing and read by victim’s mother. Although introduction was error, erroneous admission of a victim impact statement cannot serve as a basis for appellate relief, and the admission of the statement was not unduly prejudicial as the court, when imposing harsh sentence to defendant drug dealer, focused on his long, sophisticated and unrepentant career and the need to protect public from him.

Election law

Heabler Jr. v. Municipal Officers Electoral Board Village of Lakemoor, No. 2-03-0345 (2nd District, May 5, 2003). Prospective candidate sought judicial review of village municipal officers electoral board’s decision sustaining objections to nominating papers for candidacy in village trustee election. The court held that nominating papers failed to specify which office candidate was seeking, and electoral board was not estopped from removing candidate’s name from ballot.

Girot v. Keith, No. 3-03-0073 (3rd District, July 11, 2003). Candidate’s due process rights were violated by the city clerk sitting on the electoral board and testifying before board at same hearing. The electoral board’s error of allowing city clerk both to sit on board and to testify, however, was harmless. Securing nominating petitions with paper clip did not satisfy requirement of Election Code (10 ILCS 5/10-4 (West Supp. 2003)) that petitions be fastened in secure and suitable manner. Candidate had duty to fasten all nominating petitions together, even though one page of signatures would have been enough to meet requirements to be placed on ballot.

Board of Education of Indian Prairie School District No. 204 v. Du Page County Election Commission, No. 2-02-0985 (2nd District, July 15, 2003). Trial court erred when it granted section 2-615 (735 ILCS 5/2-615 (West 2002)) motion to dismiss plaintiff school district’s complaint against election commission for failure to timely publish notice of bond referendum. Under statute regarding notice of elections (10 ILCS 5/12-5 (West 2000)), election commission owed board of education a duty in addition to any duty that ran to the public as a whole. School board’s expenditures to secure curative legislation were reasonable. The school board was not required to show that the election commission’s conduct was willful.

Municipal law

1350 Lake Shore Associates v. Mazur-Berg, No. 1-02-1731 (1st District, May 21, 2003). Developer petitioned for writ of mandamus directing city’s commissioner of department of planning and development to issue approval letter of architectural plans for high-rise residential development, which was prerequisite for zoning certificate and building permit. The circuit court denied the petition. On remand, developer filed motion for final judgment order requesting court order requiring issuance of approval letter, zoning certificate, and injunction prohibiting city from enforcing new zoning ordinance. On appeal, the court held that: (1) developer was not entitled to order requiring city zoning administrator to issue zoning certificate due to failure to apply for certificate; (2) developer was not automatically entitled to zoning certificate upon receipt of approval letter; (3) developer’s failure to apply for building permit prior to passage of down-zoning ordinance and expiration of rezoning ordinance did not preclude developer from obtaining building permit; and (4) issues of whether developer knew prior to actual introduction of down-zoning ordinance that it could not rely in good faith on probability it would obtain zoning certificate and building permit and whether developer made expenditures based on that good faith which gave developer vested property interest required remand. On second remand, circuit court must ascertain date upon which plaintiff could no longer rely on existing zoning scheme, determine expenditures reasonably incurred prior to that date, and determine whether those expenditures are extensive enough to give rise to vested right.

State Bank v. City of Waterloo, No. 5-01-0942 (5th District, May 30, 2003). Even though applicant received, as partial compensation for property taken by eminent domain, a series of permits for access to a planned highway, city is not preempted by state regulation from denying access to a state highway where the state has granted it, so long as it is pursuant to more stringent regulation than the state’s, and not beyond the bounds of municipal, authority.

Philip v. Daley, No. 2-02-0749 (2nd District, June 2, 2003). Trial court did not err when it granted injunction to plaintiffs prohibiting defendants from any further acquisitions of land in order to construct new runway, because section 47 of the Illinois Aeronautics Act (620 ILCS 5/47 (West 2000)) unambiguously requires that the City of Chicago obtain Illinois Department of Transportation (“IDOT”) permit for renovation plan before it begins to acquire new land and because condemnation authority of city is not preempted by Federal law.

City of Waukegan v. Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, No. 2-02-0635, 2-03-0200 cons. (2nd District, June 13, 2003). The regional sanitary district could not amend record on appeal with minutes from city council’s meeting at which council denied district’s petition for conditional use permit and variance to construct facility; sanitary district was required to meet and secure all necessary zoning approvals from city in order to construct facility; genuine issue of material fact as to whether city’s building regulations frustrated regional sanitary district’s statutory purpose precluded summary judgment and judgment on the pleadings; proof of local siting approval was not jurisdictional prerequisite for issuance of permit by the state Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”); city was not entitled to judicial review of EPA’s decision to issue permit to regional sanitary district; and (6) evidence was sufficient to sustain trial court’s order temporarily restraining district from beginning construction.

Pace v. Regional Transportation Authority, No. 2-02-0651 (2nd District, July 17, 2003). Trial court erred when it dismissed complaint filed by Pace against the Regional Transportation Authority (“RTA”) for violating section 4.11 of the Regional Transportation Authority Act (70 ILCS 3615/4.11 (West 2000)) when it decreased Pace’s operating subsidy after setting the percentage of its operating budget that must be derived from revenues at a higher proportionate level than the other subsidiaries of the RTA. Because the complaint asserts that the RTA exceeded its statutory authority and does not challenge the wisdom of its budget decisions, it does state a cause of action. Further, because Pace has a separate existence under the Regional Transportation Authority Act, it is not barred from suing the RTA as a division of the RTA, as the trial court held. However, in order to go forward, Pace must join the other subsidiaries of the RTA as necessary parties.


Du Page County Board of Review v. Department of Revenue, No.2-02-0430 (2nd District, May 29, 2003). County board of review’s decision awarding a charitable tax exemption to church for five-room residence of teacher is manifestly erroneous because only a small part of the building is dedicated to church use and there is nothing about teacher’s duties that requires that she reside in church owned housing. However, detached garage in which school equipment is stored does qualify for charitable exemption.

Brazas v. Property Tax Appeal Board, No. 2-02-0878 (2nd District, June 11, 2003). Decision of property tax appeal board that residence, which assessor determined was 80 percent complete as of beginning of assessment year, could be assessed to the extent which new construction added value to the property is not against manifest weight of the evidence. Further, taxpayer failed to prove that his equal protection rights were infringed by differential taxation.

Peacock v. Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board, No. 4-02-0554 (4th District, June 20, 2003). The Appellate Court concluded that: (1) both the circuit court and the Appellate Court have personal jurisdiction over school boards named as additional defendants; (2) assessment ratio study was properly disregarded by the property tax appeal board; (3) property owners did not show violation of uniformity requirement (Ill. Const. 1970, art. IX, §4); (4) a property owner’s claim of excessive property tax assessment must be proved by a preponderance of the evidence, overruling Illini Country Club v. Property Tax Appeal Board, 263 Ill. App.3d 410, 635 N.E.2d 1347 (1994); and (5) property tax appeal board was required to accept property owners’ valuation of farm outbuildings.

Cook County Board of Review v. Property Tax Appeal Board, No.1-00-1183, 1-00-1184, 1-00-2213, 1-00-2228, 1-00-2237, 1-00-2238, 1-00-2239, 1-00-2595 cons. (1st District, June 30, 2003). The property tax appeal board (“PTAB”) erred when it applied assessment method to determine whether the county board violated uniformity clause in its assessment of real estate taxes without any evidence on that issue being raised by taxpayers. Although PTAB reviews issues de novo, it is limited to evidence presented at the board of review hearing. The PTAB may not address new issues on appeal. Further, PTAB could not take judicial notice of sales ratio studies or change rate of assessment established by county ordinance. However, PTAB’s findings with regards to fair market value, based on appraisals submitted by taxpayers, is not against manifest weight of the evidence.

Bond County Board of Review v. Property Tax Appeal Board, No. 5-02-0064 (5th District, August 26, 2003). Trial court erred when it reversed the property tax appeal board’s decision that farmland that had been platted as a subdivision, but which was still being actively farmed, must be assessed as farmland. Subdivided but undeveloped parcels are agricultural rather than rural residential.

People ex rel. Madigan v. Dixon-Marquette Cement, Inc., No. 2-02-0638 (2nd District, August 27, 2003). Trial court erred when it granted section 2-615 (735 ILCS 5/2-615 (West 2000)) motion to dismiss counts of complaint alleging that defendants operated waste disposal facility without permit based on section 21 of the Illinois Environmental Protection Act (415 ILCS 5/21(d)(1) (West 2000)) exemption for disposal of wastes generated on site, because the Pollution Control Board’s interpretation of exemption as applying only to “minor” amounts of waste that represent no danger to the environment has been affirmed by previous court decisions and has not been legislatively overruled. Seventy-foot-high pile of cement kiln dust containing toxic chemicals located 200 feet from river does not qualify as “minor” waste disposal site.

Tort immunity and liability

Rexroad v. City of Springfield, No. 94374 (August 21, 2003). School district could not apply provisions of section 3-106 of Tort Immunity Act (745 ILCS 10/3-106 (West 1994)) to obtain summary judgment dismissing plaintiff’s, football team student manager’s, claim for personal injuries sustained when he was running through school parking lot and tripped in open hole which had previously been barricaded. Because school parking lot served all of school, the lot was not recreational within the meaning of recreational use statute immunizing public entities and employees from premises liability based on the existence of a condition of any public property intended or permitted to be used for recreational purposes. The city and the school board owed duty to the manager even if the hole was an open and obvious condition.

Doe v. Chicago Board of Education, No. 1-02-0207 (1st District, June 13, 2003). Trial court properly dismissed plaintiff’s complaint against school board for ordinary negligence for allowing a child with a history of sexually aggressive behavior to ride school bus without attendant where he sexually abused plaintiff’s ward. The trial court erred when it dismissed count alleging willful and wanton misconduct, because the guardian alleged sufficient facts to support claim and school board did not have statutory immunity (745 ILCS 10/3-108 (West 2000)).

Curtis v. Chicago Transit Authority, No. 1-02-0815 (1st District, June 23, 2003). Plaintiff’s complaint for personal injuries was properly dismissed for failure to provide requisite notice under section 41 of the Metropolitan Transit Authority Act (70 ILCS 3605/41 (West 2000)). Motorist’s filing of complaint did not cure notice’s failure to contain correct date of accident, and transit authority was not estopped from asserting failure of notice to set forth correct date of accident.

Ozik v. Gramins, No. 1-00-3280 (1st District, June 30, 2003). Plaintiff stated and proved cause of action, not barred by Tort Immunity Act, for willful and wanton negligence on the part of police officers for arresting driver of vehicle in which plaintiff’s decedent was riding as passenger without arresting minor driver, with BAC over .2 for DUI but instead, sending him on his way, resulting in decedent’s death in subsequent automobile collision. Willful and wanton conduct in the execution and enforcement of the law is an established exception to the public duty rule and the immunities granted by the Tort Immunity Act. Tort Immunity Act’s sections providing immunity to local public entities and their employees for failure to provide adequate police protection or service, and for injuries caused by failure to make arrest or by releasing person in custody, did not prevail over willful and wanton exception. Officers and employer municipality are not entitled to apportion liability to defendant driver under several liability statute, where driver was dismissed as defendant prior to judgment.

Hanley v. City of Chicago, No. 1-01-0869 (1st District, June 30, 2003). Pedestrian brought action against city for injuries she sustained when she tripped and fell in a pothole within crosswalk at street intersection. City did not waive affirmative defense of discretionary immunity by raising it for first time in its motion for summary judgment. Once trial court allowed city to raise its affirmative defense after the close of discovery, it should have allowed pedestrian to rebut this affirmative defense with evidence presented after close of discovery. Issues of fact precluded summary judgment for city on its discretionary immunity defense. Once city embarked on repair of pothole, it had duty to perform repair in a reasonably safe and skillful manner. Affidavit of plaintiff’s expert was admissible summary judgment evidence.

Leonardi v. Chicago Transit Authority, No. 1-02-3135 (1st District, June 30, 2003). Because City of Chicago had transferred all rights and responsibilities for the use and maintenance of its facilities at the bus station at which plaintiff fell to the Chicago Transit Authority, the trial court properly granted summary judgment to the City dismissing the plaintiff’s complaint for negligently failing to maintain the sidewalk.

Wheaton v. Suwana, No. 5-02-0693 (5th District, July 15, 2003). Plaintiff’s medical malpractice complaint against surgeon was properly dismissed for violation of one-year statute of limitations contained in Tort Immunity Act because doctor was employee of county hospital. Further, neither estoppel nor equitable tolling are available to avoid limitations defense because there is no evidence that defendant did anything to mislead the plaintiffs.

Clarage v. Kuzma, No. 3-02-0451 (3rd District, July 30, 2003). Complaint which alleged that attorney for township and township board member circulated letter, which they knew falsely accused landowner of inventing prospective affiliation with hotel chain for property that landowner was trying to develop for resort, stated cause of action for defamation, tortuous interference with business expectancy, tortious interference with contract and civil conspiracy, which was not protected by conditional privilege or the Tort Immunity Act.

ESM Development Corp. v. Dawson, No. 5-02-0741 (5th District, August 6, 2003). Plaintiff’s complaint for damages based on promissory and equitable estoppel for inducing plaintiffs to develop tract of land as part of enterprise zone when, in fact, tax abatement had been approved by only half of requisite taxing bodies, is subject to provisions of Tort Immunity Act. Because developers complaint did not assert equitable claims capable of circumventing the one-year limitations period of the Tort Immunity Act, the trial court properly dismissed plaintiff’s complaint.

Ferguson v. City of Chicago, No. 1-02-2463 (1st District, August 14, 2003). Because cause of action for malicious prosecution accrued on date that trial court dismissed criminal complaint against plaintiff with leave to reinstate, rather than expiration of reinstatement period, trial court properly dismissed plaintiff’s complaint against city for violation of the one-year limitations period contained in the Tort Immunity Act.

Lanning v. Harris, No. 3-02-0637 (3rd District, August 29, 2003). Municipality was entitled to dismissal of complaint alleging ordinary negligence against police officer for personal injuries suffered by plaintiff as result of high speed chase involving criminal offender. Tort Immunity Act applies to exempt police officers from ordinary negligent conduct committed while in the act of enforcing laws.

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