Winnebago County State's Attorney

Paul Carpenter 2020 Website

Winnebago County State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross is defending her decision to dismiss an assistant state’s attorney who is also a current candidate to succeed her in the office.

 

 

Hite Ross removed Assistant State’s Attorney Paul Carpenter from his post over the weekend. She said all employees in her office are employed "at will" which means they can be dismissed at her discretion at any time.

 

Juanpablo Ramirez-Franco

Over the weekend, State Representative John Cabello replied to a Facebook user who asked him if, “now is it time to lock and load? Asking for a friend.” Cabello replied to the comment by saying, “not yet but be ready.” 

Winnebago State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite-Ross said in a press release that the representative’s rhetoric is unacceptable. She said that, "In my office, if anyone made comments of that nature, they would no longer be employed by my office."

Winnebago County State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross will not run for election next year. She announced through a news release Thursday that her tenure as State’s Attorney will end in December 2020.

Sarah Jesmer

Marilyn Hite Ross will be Winnebago County's new State's Attorney. She currently is serving as the Chief of the Criminal Bureau. She was confirmed by the Winnebago County Board on Tuesday night with a vote of 17 to 3.

Hite Ross says she wants to champion issues related to domestic violence survivor support and a more transparent police force.

She also says she would love to see more long term mental health facilities. She said some in the criminal justice system should really be in mental health facilities.

The Winnebago County State’s Attorney announced Thursday that a Rockford police officer took the right action when he shot a woman in a parking lot last spring.

On April 8, 2017, Rockford patrol officer Ben Schuster fired 6 shots at Eboney Adams, hitting her once in the arm. She had been accused of shoplifting at Dick’s Sporting Goods on East State Street. When Schuster confronted her in her car, she backed up, hitting him with her car door. Schuster said it appeared she was maneuvering to hit him again, so he shot her. Both survived.

Winnebago County

The second person wanted in connection  with a Rockford drug raid that netted nearly $8.6 million in illegal drugs has surrendered to police.

Rafael Ruiz, 26, turned himself into police Monday and was sent to the Winnebago County Jail, with bond is set at $1 million. He's charged with possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and two counts of unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon.

Winnebago County State's Attorney's Office

Rockford police and the federal Drug Enforcement Agency arrested 29 people Thursday and seized cocaine, marijuana, and prescription painkillers.

 

Winnebago County States Attorney Joe Bruscato says they were part of a “very large drug ring” spanning several counties. Arrests include two men investigators characterize as “major suppliers,” Regulo Rodriguez of Belvidere and Esaul Rivas of Rockford.

 

Sixteen were arrested as “end users,” including former Hononegah High School football coach Timothy Sughroue.

Bruscato
Susan Stephens / WNIJ

Two contentious races for State’s Attorney were decided Tuesday in Winnebago and DeKalb Counties.

Winnebago County State's Attorney Joe Bruscato is seeking a second term. The Democrat is being challenged by Republican Glen Weber. Listen to our full interviews with both of the candidates, as they answer questions put to them by WNIJ's Susan Stephens.