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Why does MCSD withhold crash information?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

McHenry County, Illinois

Why does MCSD withhold crash information?

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
June 10, 2012

On Friday, June 8, about 11:30am there was a major vehicle crash on Ill. Route 176 between Franklinville Road and P&O Road. This is approximately four miles west of Route 47. At least two, possibly three, vehicles were involved, and at least one man suffered major injuries. Was this crash investigated by the McHenry County Sheriff's Department or the Illinois State Police?

The McHenry County Sheriff's Department obviously operates 24/7, but no information has reached the public yet. No information has been placed on the sheriff's department website as a media release, and the Northwest Herald and the Daily Herald have not reported any news of this crash.

The sheriff's department should have operational procedures in place, after 175 years of continuous operation, that inform the public what is going on.

Was the State highway closed while the crash was handled? Nothing on NIXLE.

I can see where there could have been an initial media release and then updates as more information was gathered and citations issued. Was anyone killed? Withhold the name(s) until next-of-kin is notified, but begin reporting to the public.

But to withhold all information? Where's Sheriff Nygren - the guy pulling down more than $12,000/month for holding the responsibility for running the office? If he's not around, where is Undersheriff Zinke? Does he have the authority to put out media releases? I have yet to see one that bears any name other than Nygren's.

MCSD sergeants (shift supervisors) should have the authority to talk to the media. Even deputies could be trained to deal with the media.

News should not have to pass through a bottleneck to reach the public. Of course, this would mean that the Department would trust deputies...

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