Newly elected Rock Island County State's Attorney John McGehee wasted little time getting to work after he was sworn into office on Monday.
Mr. McGehee, 51, of Moline, was sworn in by Chief Judge Jeff O'Connor shortly after 8 a.m. in Rock Island County Circuit Court. Norma Kauzlarich was then inducted as first assistant state's attorney, along with assistant state's attorneys.
By Monday afternoon Mr. McGehee had familiarized himself with the various civil and criminal departments in Rock Island County and, in the coming days, plans to introduce himself to area law enforcement in order to discuss plans for the future of his office.
"I'm going to be a very busy state's attorney," Mr. McGehee said with a laugh. He was elected Nov. 6 in a race with Republican candidate and Rock Island County Assistant State's Attorney Jim Wozniak, 33, of East Moline.
He replaced Mark Senko, who served as interim state's attorney since June 2011, following the resignation of Jeff Terronez, who pleaded guilty in April of that year to delivering alcohol to a minor.
Mr. McGehee said on Monday he was honored to be chosen and said he hopes to "restore the integrity" of the State's Attorney's Office.
"I made a pledge that ethical misconduct and personal failures will no longer overshadow or interfere with the work that this office has to do," Mr. McGehee said, adding that he will "make the tough calls" to best benefit the citizens of Rock Island County.
As part of his commitment, Mr. McGehee said he intends to be "hands-on" with the events in his office, including reviewing all felony plea agreements.
"My goal is to be involved with the preliminary hearings first, followed by knowing every single felony criminal case that is filed in Rock Island County so that there is consistency," he said.
Additionally, the new state's attorney said he will be a strong presence in the local community, including working with leaders of area corporations, organizations and schools.
Today is Monday, March 10, the 69th day of 2014. There are 296 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: Numerous counterfeiters are around, taking advantage of the influx of currency to pass their worthless trash. 1889 -- 125 years ago: J.J. Reimers, secretary and treasurer of the Rock Island Lumber and Manufacturing Co., on behalf of that firm, contributed $500 toward construction of a new Methodist church. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Samuel Ryerson, county recorder, was re-elected president of the 19th District of Knights of Pythias. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Three condemnation suits have been filed by the city of Rock Island to acquire property needed for an approach to the Rock Island-Davenport bridge, which has been under construction since March 6. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Plans for an eight-story Sheraton Inn in downtown Rock Island were announced today at a luncheon meeting at the Gay Nineties sponsored by the Rock Island Chamber of Commerce. Cost of the structure is estimated at $2.5 million. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Representatives of the Hardee's Golf Classic and tournament sponsor Hardee's Food Systems may meet next week with PGA Tour Commissioner Deane Beman to discuss a possible change in the tournament dates.