News Minute: Here is the latest Illinois news from The Associate - – Rockford’s News Leader

News Minute: Here is the latest Illinois news from The Associated Press at 3:40 a.m. CDT

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CHICAGO (AP) - A newly elected Cook County Circuit Court judge who refused to report to his traffic court assignment has resigned. The Chicago Tribune reports an Illinois Supreme Court spokesman says Richard Cooke resigned Tuesday. The move came after a committee of presiding judges referred his refusal to take up the traffic court assignment to the Judicial Inquiry Board. The state agency investigates allegations of judicial misconduct. Cooke was eventually assigned to marriage court.

CHICAGO (AP) - The winner of a suburban Chicago mayoral race has been barred by a judge from taking the oath of office because he is a convicted felon. Cook County Circuit Judge David Atkins on Friday granted the state's attorney's request for a temporary restraining order blocking Roger Agpawa from being seated as mayor of Markham. Atkins noted Illinois election law bars Agpawa from holding elected municipal office due to a 1999 federal felony conviction for mail fraud.

CHICAGO (AP) - Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says Chicago schools will remain open despite a judge's dismissal of a district lawsuit over education funding by the state of Illinois. Judge Franklin Ulyses Valderrama on Friday denied a Chicago Public School motion for an injunction seeking to bar the state from distributing education funds in a discriminatory manner. CPS CEO Forrest Claypool had said the judge's decision could mean the district would end on June 1 without additional funding from the state.

CHICAGO (AP) - A federal judge has sentenced the former head of Chicago Public Schools to more than four years in prison for steering $23 million in no-bid city contracts to education firms in exchange for more than $2 million in bribes and kickbacks. A tearful Barbara Byrd-Bennett apologized before she was sentenced Friday in Chicago. The judge told the 68-year-old that the brazenness of bilking a cash-strapped school district suggests she never believed she'd get caught.

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