Attorney General’s office denies giving OK to shred Springfield police files

Illinois State Police on Tuesday released hundreds of pages of documents and hours' worth of audio recordings from its lengthy investigation into the Springfield Police Department’s 2013 file-shredding scandal, revealing apparent contradictions among city personnel about how and why things happened the way they did.

There were no real revelations, though one of the former members of the city’s legal department, Geannette Wittendorf, told investigators she received approval from a public access counselor with the state Attorney General’s Office, giving the OK to shred documents that were the subject of an open-records request. An assistant attorney general denied providing any such guidance.

The release of the more than 800 pages of documents and audio recordings from the nearly yearlong investigation, which occurred during Mayor Mike Houston’s tenure, came on the day of the city’s primary election, with Houston competing against four challengers to advance to the April general election and ultimately earn another four-year term. Continue>>>