McLean County judges accused of poor ethics

Jul 25, 2014

Two McLean County Circuit Judges have allegedly violated court ethics rules. Circuit Judges Scott Drazewski and Rebecca Foley face a complaint before the nine member Illinois Courts Commission chaired by a State Supreme Court Justice.

Drazewski and Foley allegedly had an affair with each other beginning in late 2010. The Judicial Inquiry Board Complaint indicates Judge Drazewski did not recuse himself from cases involving Judge Foley's husband, attorney Joseph Foley.

A couple months later, Attorney Foley allegedly became aware of the relationship and demanded Drazewski remove himself from Foley's cases. Drazewski then allegedly lied to Chief Circuit Judge Elizabeth Robb about why he was recusing himself from seven cases involving Joe Foley. The document goes on to say Judge Robb received credible information about the affair six months later and ordered the two judges to break it off. 

Both Judges Drazewski and Foley are accused of failing to conduct themselves in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary. Drazewski faces a further violation of “failing to disqualify himself in a proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned.” And Foley is in hot water for failing to report Drazewski's violation in not removing himself from cases.

The two have three weeks to reply to the complaint filed by the Illinois Judicial Inquiry Board. Given the logistical hurdles in assembling the nine member courts commission for a day long hearing, it will likely take until autumn for a hearing to take place. A source tells Illinois Public Radio, that after that, the time it takes to make a ruling can range widely.