Jo Daviess candidate has unusual donors

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Lt. Tim Wand is one of four candidates who wants to be Jo Daviess County Sheriff. He was hand-picked by former sheriff Steve Allendorf. Wand has 16 years of experience with the sheriff’s department.

He also has several “friends” from Chicago. An examination of his campaign contributions for the period from July 1 to Dec. 31, 2005, of last year shows $2,200 given by residents of Chicago.

These contributors include Frank Capuzi, Republican committeeman from Chicago’s 26th Ward, who has a home in Galena, according to Wand. Capuzi is closely connected to the administration of George Ryan.

Another player in this game is James Dvorak, former Undersheriff of Cook County, who became Republican Chairman of Cook County. He was No. 2 man in Cook County Sheriff James O’Grady’s department. He has a connection to Capuzi through the GOP.

Dvorak was a close friend of Richard Simon, known to some as “Chief Inspector Simon.” Simon was a good friend and associate of Ben R. Stein, who the Illinois Police and Sheriff’s News called “the well-heeled associate of organized crime syndicate figures and ex-convict.”

Dvorak was hauled into court and pleaded guilty to taking bribes ($175,000 in protection money from bookmakers) and tax evasion between 1987-89 while he was Undersheriff. In 1994, he was sentenced to 41 months in prison. Then came a second indictment, charging he employed “ghost payrollers” and hired unqualified people to be part-time deputies. Dvorak was in charge of personnel, including hiring and promotions. Dvorak drew 60 months prison time for that offense.

Then there is former Rep. Roger Stanley, also known as “The Hog” for his aggressive pursuit of state contracts. Stanley has been implicated in a probe of George Ryan’s campaign operations, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Stanley’s affiliated companies, the newspaper said, received at least $2.9 million in business from Metra, the commuter rail operation, even though the Stanley companies did not always submit the low bid.

The Sun-Times reported Metra awarded Stanley’s Midwest CompuService two contracts—one in 1993 and again in 1996—to conduct ridership counts for the rail transit operation and to perform other services. Stanley eventually was charged with paying $130,000 in bribes to a Metra board member in return for the contracts, which totaled more than $4 million.

Those contracts included John Doria, Orland Township Republican committeeman and an employee in the Secretary of State’s office, then operated by George Ryan. Doria was the former patronage chief for Scott Fawell, a top Ryan aide who was indicted earlier this year.

One of Stanley’s subcontractors on the Metra deals was Security Professionals Inc., operated by Lawrence “Larry” Doria, brother of John Doria, and Wayne Jakalski.

The firm previously was known as Special Operations Associates. The co-owners were O’Grady and Dvorak. An official of SPI told the Sun-Times that O’Grady still holds a minority share in the company.

In 1998, the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation reprimanded Doria and fined the private security contractor $2,300 for employee registration violations. The same year, Doria was fined $2,500 for numerous employee registration violations.

In February, the Galena Gazette reported Tim Wand had been awarded the “Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer of the Year” award. The article said the award was presented at the annual awards banquet of the Illinois Security Chiefs Association in December.

The Illinois Security Chiefs’ Association was a 150-member organization. Secretary of State Jesse White’s Web site, in its corporate file, lists the group as dissolved on Jan. 3, 2000. The last annual filing report listed is 1999. The ISCA listed its staff members on its previous computer site. The chairman of the board of directors was Larry Doria.

Asked about that, Wand said the award was given Dec. 8, 2005. He said the Chief of Chicago Police was on the dais with him at the banquet. Told of the dissolution notice, Wand said: “Really? If it was dissolved, it’s news to us.” He said it is still in existence to his knowledge. “It’s a very real organization,” he said.

One real event happened two years ago in the fall. A cow got loose and wandered from the farm owned by Juliette Schmidt of Elizabeth. The cow walked out on a nearby rural road. Schmidt said Wand, driving a squad car, came down the road at about 45 mph and struck the cow. The impact flipped the 1,100-pound animal up and over the squad, killing it and demolishing the squad car. Wand escaped serious injury. The incident was never reported in the media.

Wand said the accident was reported to Illinois State Police. “It was a dark night,” he said, “and a dark road near Apple Canyon Lake and a dark cow. I came around a corner, and there it was and I hit it. It was not her cow. It was owned by a Freeport man who rented her land.”

Additional contributions to Wand’s campaign have come from South Barrington, Crestwood, Franklin Park and Oswego. Wand also has received some contributions from former sheriff Steve Allendorf. Allendorf has close ties to George Ryan. Ryan has long-term connections to officials in Cicero, a Mobster-dominated community since the days of Al Capone.

When asked about the Chicago connections, Wand said: “All the people listed on my D2s (contribution reports) either have property in Jo Daviess County or operate businesses here.”

During Wand’s 16-year tenure on the Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Department, there have been more than 50 arson fires in the town of Stockton and others around Galena. There also have been many suspicious and unsolved deaths.

These included the deaths of Sgt. Ed Crowley of the Hanover Police Department and Dan Curley of Galena. Both took place in the 1990s. Neither case has been solved, and many questions about them remain unanswered. Several of these cases were labeled accidents.

The Rock River Times asked what Wand intends to do about these matters. “Like any case,” he said, “if we get new evidence we’ll reopen it. Some of those cases are state and federal cases.”

Wand has said he has a plan for dealing with rampant drug trafficking in his county. “The first thing is we’ll continue doing what we are doing,” he said. “I’m thinking of realigning the investigations, so we can spend more time on the drugs. If we focus more time on it, the case load will go down by itself.”

TRRT asked if he intends to seek out the suppliers of the drugs and not just kids with small amounts of marijuana. “We have always gone after the people supplying the drugs,” he said, “but in order to reach them, you have to go through the small time users.”

The other candidates for sheriff are: Leo Hefel, a veteran state trooper who served in Jo Daviess County and a former member of the Galena Police Department; Elton Self, a previous unsuccessful candidate for sheriff; and Democrat Gerald Bennett.

Voters will make their choices March 21.

From the March 8-14, 2006, issue

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