A fed-up veteran Chicago prosecutor quit his job and has pledged to leave the state after writing a scathing letter that ripped “stupid” officials for following a “popular political agenda,” that has led to a surge in violent crime.
Jason Poje, a felony trial attorney with the Cook County State Attorney’s Office, sent the letter to 85 colleagues on Friday as he headed out the door, explaining that he was departing because of several progressive reforms that have made the city more dangerous for everyone, Fox News reported.
“The simple fact is that this State and County have set themselves on a course to disaster,” wrote Poje, who was with the office for 20 years. “And the worst part is that the agency for whom I work has backed literally every policy change that has the predictable, and predicted, outcome of more crime and more people getting hurt.”
The veteran prosecutor claimed bond reform has made the city lass safe.
“Bond reform designed to make sure no one stays in jail while their cases are pending with no safety net to handle more criminals on the streets, shorter parole periods, lower sentences for repeat offenders, the malicious and unnecessary prosecution of law enforcement officers, the overuse of diversion programs, intentionally not pursuing prosecutions for crimes lawfully on the books after being passed by our legislature and signed by a governor, all of the so-called reforms have had a direct negative impact, with consequences that will last for a generation,” he continued.
While he never mentioned her by name, Poje had clearly had enough of Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx, who was nominated in 2016 and was re-elected in 2020.
Her office is the second-largest prosecutor’s office in the country.
“I’ve been through enough stupid State’s Attorney policies before. But this Office’s complete failure to even think for a moment before rushing into one popular political agenda after another has put my family directly in harm’s way,” he wrote.
“The unavoidable consequences are what we are witnessing in real time, an increase in crime of all kinds, businesses and families pulling up the stakes, and the bodies piling up; the whole time with a State’s Attorney who insists there is nothing to see here, and if there is, it must be someone else’s fault,” he wrote.
Poje said that the reforms have unfairly tipped the scale of justice in favor of criminals and their defense attorneys.
“When both sides vigorously defend their positions, a balance is reached between protecting rights while preserving some sort of order and safety. Once we start doing too much of the defense’s job, once we pull our punches, once we decide it’s worth risking citizens’ lives to have a little social experiment, that balance is lost,” he said.
Poje said he and his family had moved to a quiet part of the suburbs where he could safely raise his son, who is now five years old. Now, he claims his son wakes up to the sound of gunshots.
He has opted to move out of Illinois, his native state.
“I will not raise my son here,” he declared.
“I am fortunate to have the means to escape, so my entire family is leaving the State of Illinois.
“I grew up here, my family and friends are here, and yet my own employer has turned it into a place from which I am no longer proud to be, and in which my son is not safe.”
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