Thursday, November 21, 2019

Citizen Beats Bull Valley

There is a citizen out there who took on Bull Valley and its revenue plan. He fought and he fought and he fought. Was this David vs. Goliath? Or David vs. a mole hill? But a mole hill that could spend taxpayer dollars. Dollars after dollars after dollars.

I don't know the Petitioner, the person who was harmed by the tactics of the Bull Valley PD and its former Chief. Most drivers know the reputation of the Bull Valley PD, or at least its reputation for many years.

From McHenry County Circuit Court record, this case appears to be No. 15LA000407, Charles A. Casamento v. Village of Bull Valley et al. Virtually impossible to find among the many cases involving Bull Valley, but easily found in search results for James Page.

I had heard a story about one of its part-time police officers who would stop local Mexican pizza delivery drivers for speeding. Being such a nice guy, he would "let" them pay their speeding fines on the spot, in cash, so that a hot pizza wouldn't cool off. Very considerate, right? That officer was allowed to resign. He should have been prosecuted and sent to jail.

Well, the local lawsuit was settled this week. Read this posting from Facebook.

I’ve been waiting for this day for almost 4 years. Four days short of 4 years actually.
Tonight, the jury concluded that I was falsely arrested and maliciously prosecuted by Jim Page and the village of Bull Valley holding them liable for my damages.
One month ago at a pre-trial conference with the judge, opposing counsel, and my lawyers, it was ruled that there would be many things that were not to be discussed or allowed into the trial as evidence. While I don’t agree with that decision, I respect the rule of law and it applied to both sides - but in my opinion there was so much more that wasn’t allowed on my side.
My attorneys went into the lions den this week with two hands tied behind their backs and simply delivered the best case they could have with what we were allowed to do. They fought and battled like no one I’ve ever seen to make sure the jury understood the most they could from what happened to me. I am extremely grateful by their efforts in the monumental task.
Thank you Jeannie Ridings and George Kililis for all of your hard work. And Randal Baudin Sr who initially assisted me and filed the lawsuit. 
And thank you to all the anonymous police officers who assisted me from day one. You know who you are and I am extremely grateful.
After understanding the rules of evidence before the trial, we had assumptions that my damages would be under $10,000. Tonight, 12 jurors awarded me $55,000. While it is not the amount we were hoping for, I am extremely satisfied simply over the principle and I understand it was way more than I thought it would be based on the rules going into trial.
I will say this one last time. I started this campaign over five years ago to help every citizen who either drives through or enters Bull Valley. The police department for so many years was running a major racketeering and illegal ticketing operation robbing citizens blind for so many years and left unchecked. My initial goal was to figure out what was going on and help one of my employees at the time. And then the rest is history from there.
I gave them an opportunity to make a course correction and rather than change course, they tried ruining my life. At the end of it, the illegal ticketing operation has ceased, several police officer positions have been eliminated - including the chief of police and I now understand people can drive through the village for the most part without the fear of having their lives turned upside down.
Thank you for all of your interest in my case, and I want you all to know today justice has been served.
I myself never had a problem driving through Bull Valley but, then, I'm the guy who was often at the front of the line of cars, poking along at exactly the posted speed limit and making full stops at Stop signs. I had heard about speeding tickets for 2MPH over the posted limit, although a former Chief told me that none of his officers ever wrote a ticket for less than 10MPH over.

Congratulations to Mr. Casamento for your perseverance and your victory.

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