Union County residents want answers about missing money
By: Carly O'Keefe
JONESBORO, Il. --Illinois State Police are investigating reports of money missing from the Union County Circuit Clerk's office. Police launched the investigation last year, but some folks around the county think it's time for results, or at least an update from investigators. Yard signs popping up around Anna and Jonesboro demand answers.
Thursday morning, J.D. Livesay found a sign his front yard that read:" Where is the missing money in the Circuit Clerk's office?"
"I still don't know who put the sign there but the sign appeared," said Livesay.
For most other people, it might be odd to see a sign in your front yard that you didn't put there. But Livesay offers his high visibility front yard as a free for all for folks to post signs of any kind.
"I never say no to a sign. I've lived here since 1973, no matter what politics you are, you can put a sign in my yard, no questions asked," said Livesay.
But this most recent sign has stuck him in the middle of a controversy.
"When I read it, I thought, hmmm, intriguing. And when I went in the house, I had a phone call waiting for me from the courthouse in Jonesboro. They said there was a person wanting to have me arrested for having the sign in my yard," said Livesay.
As of Friday, Livesay was still a free man, however, now he says he won't take the sign down down. And the question it poses has piqued his interest.
"Where did the money go?" said Livesay.
That question has also raised eyebrows among other folks in town.
"Kind of looks like something's been hid, like someone's trying to hide something," said Darrell Sweitzer.
While the sign is generating a lot of talk in Union County, State's Attorney Allen James is keeping pretty quiet. James says there's an investigation going on and he's not a part of it, it involves the Illinois State Police and the Illinois Attorney General's Office.
James did say there is no money missing at this point, which may be because money was transferred from the county contingency fund into the circuit clerks' budget late last year.
"You would think by now if it was stolen they'd have a suspect or something, but nobody can find anything out," said Rick Tweedy of Jonesboro.
The hush-hush nature of the on-going investigation prompted Tweedy to get a sign of his own. A big one. The sign asking the same question:" Where is the missing money in the Circuit Clerk's office?' stands four by eight feet in a yard a block from the county courthouse.
"The questions there. Where's the missing money? Sooner or later, somebody's going to have to give us answers," said Tweedy.
Calls were not returned by Illinois State Police investigators regarding this on-going investigation.