Lou Bianchi should step aside as McHenry County state’s attorney until the criminal case against him is resolved.
Bianchi should relinquish his responsibilities to an acting state’s attorney while he fights the 21 counts handed up by a grand jury.
We stop short of calling for Bianchi’s resignation. Under state law, Bianchi can hold office unless he is convicted, and this matter only is at its initial stages. Like the criminal defendants his office prosecutes, he is innocent until proven guilty.
He consistently has denied the accusations against him and will have the opportunity to defend himself in a court of law.
But considering the serious nature of the charges, including 19 counts of official misconduct, one count of unlawful communication with a grand jury witness, and one count of conspiracy, Bianchi’s status as the county’s top law enforcement officer has been undermined.
If he is convicted of the charges, he will be removed from office. If he is vindicated, he can resume his official duties as state’s attorney.
In the interim, Bianchi should step aside. It is in the best interest of taxpayers, voters, and the judicial system.