DuPage Judge Sees No Need to Probe Land Deal

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Byline: Kristy Kennedy Daily Herald Staff Writer

A DuPage County judge found there is no reason to investigate the land deal that set off a furor among county board chairman candidates.

DuPage County Circuit Court Chief Judge Michael J. Galasso's order was released Wednesday.

Galasso's finding indicated Robert Schillerstrom did not vote, take action or exert any influence in selling to the county a strip of land he owned while serving on the county board eight years ago.

"It's a vindication of what Bob has been saying all along," said Dave Donahue, Schillerstrom's campaign manager. "We'd like to put it behind us, but we assume our opponents are going to continue to twist the facts to suit their own purpose."

Schillerstrom, a former county board member from Naperville, is running against county board members Michael Formento of Glen Ellyn and Patrick O'Shea of Lombard.

Formento last week asked Attorney General Jim Ryan and acting U.S. Attorney Scott Lassar to investigate the land deal.

Ryan then referred the matter to DuPage County State's Attorney Joseph Birkett, while Lassar told Birkett he wouldn't be looking into the charges, Birkett said.

Because Birkett has publicly backed Schillerstrom for chairman, he opted to have Galasso rule on whether an independent attorney should pursue the matter.

Birkett said in his request to Galasso that he recognized "in light of these allegations and due to the political timing of this complaint that I must avoid even the appearance of impropriety. …