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Whistleblower Exonerated after 8 Years of Political Prosecution

The Sidebar 30 July 2014 2 Comments

SCOOP: Annabel Melongo found NOT GUILTY in Save-A-Life Foundation computer tampering case




From an e-mail I just received from Annabel Melongo’s attorney, Jennifer Bonjean (slightly edited for clarity):

Today Cook County Judge Joseph Joyce entered a directed finding in favor of Annabel. After 8 years, the State’s case came down to a single allegation that Annabel accessed Carol Spizzirri’s email and forwarded and email to herself. And they couldn’t even prove that. It Is a text book example of the State failing to exercise its discretion and adhere to its duty to seek truth. We are all indebted to Annabel Melongo for having the courage to hold the State to its burden. She took enormous risk and we are all better off for it.


Click here for Ms. Bonjean’s contact information.
Click here for a compilation of media reports about the Melongo case.


Click here for a compilation of media reports about Carol Spizzirri and the Save-A-Life Foundation scandal.


What’s next?


As I reported last year, Ms. Melongo filed an ongoing civil rights suit in federal court. She’s now being represented in that case by Ms. Bonjean.


  • Lee Cary said:

    So who accepts responsibility, and experiences the consequences of accountability, for the false imprisonment of Melongo? Anybody? Anybody?

    Back when Melongo’s case was underway, I called the Illinois head of the NAACP reference her case. Left messages twice. He never called back. So, I called the NAACP HQ in DC – they were decidedly disinterested. (And all this time I thought she was a black woman.)

    I called Dick Durban’s office – since he had been a high-profile supporter of the SALF. His press secretary say he was not and had not been a supporter. So I sent her a video of him enthusiastically supporting the “charity.” No response.

    Arnie Duncan, while head of the Chicago schools, personally signed checks amounting to about $50K (as I recall) made out to the “charity” for undocumented educational services. He headed a multi-billion dollar organization. What’s he doing signing small checks, relatively speaking? I contacted his successor in an effort to learn what the money was for. Silence.

    The IL AG’s Office, according to the Press Secretary, opened an investigation concerning over $856K ,representing state and federal grants given to the SALF, that was not reported on any year’s SALF IL Form 990. (Wonder if anyone checked the fed’s 990.)

    The AG’s alleged investigation into the unaccounted for monies has been “underway” for at least 2 years now. (We can be grateful that that office wasn’t in charge of planning the Normandy Invasion.)

    Melongo was wrongly imprisoned – a Cook County political prisoner. Who set her up? And why? And who will be held accountable?

    I’m guessing – nobody.

  • John Powers said:

    Good points all Lee,

    Headscratching here, as the Chicago Daily Observer is the only outlet which has covered this verdict. Nothing in the Tribune or Sun-Times. Pretty good story, big name politicians involved, sympathetic defendant, Supreme Court involved, and no mention in the Tribune or Sun-Times of the verdict.

    Glad she is out, but there is more to this story.


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