ISU president pleads not guilty

Apr 24, 2014

Former ISU President Tim Flanagan will be back in court to face disorderly conduct charges in late May. Flanagan's Attorney Stephanie Wong represented him Wednesday as Flanagan and his wife sat expressionless at the rear of a third floor McLean County Courtroom.

"We have entered a plea of not guilty. We are still awaiting discovery. And we will vigorously defend this case," says Wong.

Former ISU head of grounds R. Patrick Murphy filed a complaint against Flanagan regarding a December interaction Flanagan had with Murphy at the ISU residence on Gregory Street in Normal. Murphy alleged Flanagan swore at him, became so heated that Flanagan's saliva landed on Murphy, and made physician contact with Murphy in front of other members of the grounds crew tasked to clean up lawn aeration soil plugs. Jason Chambers is the McLean County State's Attorney.   

"This has got to be the most highly publicized Class C Misdemeanor in the history of the legal profession," says Chambers.

It's not uncommon for prosecutors to adjust charges up to a felony or down in severity as a case proceeds. Chambers declines to predict.

"I don't know if we are far enough along to do that. I  have always said that every case is always in flux. They're fluid. They're changing," says Chambers.

Chambers says a conviction on the current charge could net Flanagan  a maximum penalty of 30 days in jail, a $1,500 dollar fine, and 30 hours community service.

The next court date in the case is May 28th. After the case became public, Flanagan resigned his post as University President and received a $480,000 partial payout of his contract.