Judge: Prosecutors must reveal falsehoods in Schock case
PEORIA, Ill. (AP) -- A federal judge on Tuesday ordered the U.S. attorney in central Illinois to detail in writing any additional "falsehoods" or "misstatements" made to grand juries investigating former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock.
The order by U.S. District Judge Colin Bruce was prompted by prosecutors first denying and then admitting to commenting 11 times on Schock's decision not to testify before either grand jury investigating the Peoria Republican.
Schock resigned in 2015 and has pleaded not guilty to wire fraud, theft of government funds and falsification of election commission filings. The effort by attorneys for Schock to get the charges dismissed revolves around the allegation that prosecutors mentioned the ex-lawmaker didn't appear before the grand jury.
Defendants aren't required to testify before grand juries because a person has a right against self-incrimination.
Bruce noted the change in position came several months after Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Bass denied the allegations by Schock's attorneys, and it was acting U.S. Attorney Patrick Hansen who wrote to the judge clarifying things.
The judge gave Hansen two weeks to respond to his order.
A spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office wouldn't comment on the judge's order. Schock defense attorney George Terwilliger said, "The order speaks for itself."