PART 14 OF COUNTYLEAKS SERIES ON DUPAGE COUNTY FOREST PRESERVE...Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven, Part Eight, Part Nine, Part Ten, Part Eleven, Part Twelve,
"MR. TATARELIS HAD THE GALL TO CROSS-EXAMINE OUR EXPERT WITNESSES! ...IT'S INSULTING!" thundered Patrick Collins last Wednesday while pointing at Assistant State's Attorney Ken Tatarelis, during closing arguments of DuPage's eight-day criminal trial in Wheaton before Judge Liam Brennan.
The case involves two former employees of the DuPage County Forest Preserve's IT Department, Mark McDonald and David Tepper, and the former IT vendor, Arif Mahmood. The Forest Preserve conducted a secret investigation of the men in 2011 and later brought their findings to authorities. In 2012, the men were charged with a collective 317 felony indictments. (McDonald's trial was rescheduled to Oct. 22nd due to health issues.) Judge Brennan's decision for Tepper and Mahmood is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 1st, at 9 am.
Collins, a former federal prosecutor now a defense attorney, was referring to three IT expert forensic witnesses testifying on behalf of his client, Mahmood, who was originally charged with 40 felony counts and was still left with two. Expert witnesses had analyzed data in Mahmood's possession, and what was left at Forest Preserve headquarters which turned out to be...nothing.
Deliberate and Secret Destruction of Public Records Admitted in Court Room
The cause of Collins' outburst was that the State had never sought to preserve evidence at the Forest Preserve, yet grilled the IT witnesses on the scraps left behind. These witnesses cost the defense tens of thousands of dollars.
There wasn't any computer data left at the Forest Preserve for the State to preserve by the time they got the case.