Close race: State’s attorney candidate awaits mail-in ballot count

J. Hanley

UPDATE: As of late Wednesday, March 18, the GOP primary race for Winnebago County state’s attorney is tied. J. Hanley and David Gill both have 8,312 votes as mail-in ballots are being counted.

By Jim Hagerty

ROCKFORD – Candidate for Winnebago County state’s attorney J. Hanley is hoping once the mail-in ballots are counted he will emerge the winner of Tuesday’s GOP primary election.

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As it it stands, however, Loves Park attorney David Gill (8,260) edged Hanley (8,228) by 32 votes.

“There are mail-in ballots which will be counted in the next few days,” Hanley said in a Wednesday afternoon Facebook post. “The election authorities will not make the election ‘official’ until March 31. As such, we may not know the final count until then.”

David Gill

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Hanley did not say whether he would press the issue further than the mail-in tally. Instead, he thanked his family, volunteers and Gill.

“I want to compliment my opponent on a race well run,” he said. “Having an opponent of Mr. Gill’s caliber brought the best out of me.”

A former assistant in the Winnebago County State’s Attorney’s Office and Rockford native, Hanley was also federal prosecutor in Tucson, where he worked on drug-smuggling  and human-trafficking cases. He currently serves as general counsel for the Rock River Water Reclamation District.

Gill is also a Rockford native and was an assistant in the Winnebago County State’s Attorney’s Office for eight years. During that time, he was a misdemeanor trial supervisor and part of the felony trial team where he prosecuted cases relating to aggravated discharge of a firearm, aggravated battery with a firearm, aggravated domestic battery, arson, theft, and gang-related crimes. He’s father, Timothy Gill, and grandfather, Robert C. Gill, were both judges.

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The official winner of Tuesday’s race will face Democrat Paul Carpenter in November’s general election.

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