Steve Balich’s calls for audit of Sheriff Mike Kelley’s office due to whistleblower lawsuit ignored by board
An audit of the Will County Sheriff’s Office is the only way to get to the bottom of charges in a lawsuit of faked payroll records by higher-ups in the office, says Will County Board member Steve Balich (R-Homer Glen). But Balich says his calls for an audit have been shrugged off by the Democratically controlled board.
“All they tell me is that they are looking into it,” Balich told the Will County Gazette. “That’s all I know.”
Board Speaker Denise Winfrey (D-Joliet) did not respond to a request to discuss what action the board was taking in light of the allegations made in a May 7 lawsuit by Nathan Musur, a corrections officer in Sheriff Mike Kelley’s office. The suit charges that the office violated the state’s Whistleblower Act when it demoted Musur from sergeant back to corrections officer for telling a superior that Deputy Chief David Adams was falsifying payroll records to make it appear that he took no vacation. A lump payment is given to retiring employees for accrued unused time.
Musur was promoted to sergeant in May 2017 and demoted in August 2018.
Musur’s attorney, Tom Needham, said that others in the sheriff’s office might be involved as well.
“My client would get vacation bounce back messages on emails sent to colleagues,” Needham said. “But the payroll records indicate that no vacation was taken during that time.”
Needham says he has yet to hear any response to the lawsuit from the sheriff’s office; the office has until June 17 to respond to Will County Circuit Court, where the lawsuit was filed. The first court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 21.
Needham said his client, who continues to go to work, wants his sergeant’s rank back, and a minimum of $50,000 in damages.
“My client is 100 percent sure he has the facts right on this one,” Needham said.