Cook County prosecutors are reportedly planning to bring criminal contempt charges against retired Cook County Judge Patricia Martin, who is accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the late Oscar Wilkerson Jr., a former member of the Tuskegee Airmen.

Assistant State’s Attorney Jeremy Bergstrom said at a hearing that his office will need several weeks to file the case against Martin. In May, Judge Anna Demacopoulos ordered Martin to pay over $1.2 million after she failed to provide records or answer questions about Wilkerson’s savings and retirement accounts that she had been managing.

Wilkerson, a Congressional Gold Medal recipient, had trusted Martin to help with his finances in his final years. But last year, at age 96, he discovered he owed thousands in missed payments to his senior living facility and that his accounts had been drained. Martin is accused of stealing nearly $250,000 and using $110,000 to purchase cryptocurrency.

Attorneys allege Martin violated a court order by accessing her cryptocurrency account after being prohibited. Judge Demacopoulos stated this could constitute indirect criminal contempt.

In addition to potential criminal charges, Martin is facing disbarment.  Martin has submitted a motion to the Supreme Court, offering to relinquish her law license. In an affidavit, she stated that the evidence presented by the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission would undoubtedly establish the facts and conclusions of misconduct as outlined in the statement of charges.

Martin’s role as an advisor to the state Supreme Court’s committee on juvenile courts has also been terminated.


Source: Chicago Sun Times