Will County State’s Attorney

James W. Glasgow

Will County State’s Attorney James W. Glasgow has a long and distinguished career during which he has implemented groundbreaking initiatives to investigate, prosecute and prevent crime.  As a prosecutor and third-generation Will County resident, State’s Attorney Glasgow has committed himself to making Will County the safest place to live, work and raise families. He is serving an unprecedented sixth term as Will County’s elected state’s attorney.

State’s Attorney Glasgow graduated from St. Patrick’s grade school and Joliet Catholic High School before receiving his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He then received his Juris Doctor from Northern Illinois Law School in DeKalb, Illinois, and has been practicing law since 1981. He and his wife, Gina, are the proud parents of four sons and a daughter. They also are the parents of four loving dogs, two of whom are rescues.

Under his direction, the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office has led the way in the creation of crime prevention programs, while maintaining a felony conviction rate 15 points higher than the state average. State’s Attorney Glasgow’s initiatives and accomplishments include:

Safeguarding Children

  • Launched the cutting-edge Will County State’s Attorney’s High Technology Crimes Unit to identify predators who use the Internet to produce, transmit, and download child pornography. Since its founding in 2012, the unit has assisted local law enforcement agencies in arrest of more than 150 individuals who were in possession of child pornography or who were actually abusing children.
  • Established the Will County Children’s Advocacy Center in 1995 to stop child sexual predators in their tracks and provide victims with hope, healing, and justice.
  • Created the Paws 4 Kids pet therapy program to comfort sexually abused children who visit the Children’s Advocacy Center.
  • Has continuously reached out to students and youth groups throughout the region to talk about Internet safety, cyberbullying, gang interdiction, drug and alcohol abuse, violence prevention, and character education.

Here, Jackson and Kiwi are joined by a young victim’s stuffed pal as they play mock jurors.

State’s Attorney Glasgow meets with University of St. Francis Professor of Education Madonna Murphy and Forest Park Individual Education School Principal Jacob Darley to discuss the revival of the Will County Character Coalition to foster character education in our local schools.

Fighting Domestic Violence

  • Successfully prosecuted Drew Peterson, securing a 38-year sentence for the criminal’s murder of his third wife in 2004 in a landmark case that attracted international attention.
  • Successfully prosecuted Christopher Vaughn and secured a life sentence for the murder of his wife and three children.
  • Passed tough new domestic violence laws to protect women and children and punish the most violent abusers.  These initiatives include Rebecca’s Law, which raises the penalties for abusers who torture their victims, and a new law that increases prison terms for repeat offenders.
  • Formed a specialized Domestic Violence Prosecution Unit consisting of attorneys and advocates who give individuals the support they need to follow through with the prosecution of their abusers.
  • Created the Victim Independence Program that provides individuals the services necessary to break the cycle of violence and establish their independence.
  • Pioneered Will County’s first specialized Domestic Violence Court, which mandated abuser counseling to break the destructive cycle of violence, and created Will County’s first comprehensive Domestic Violence Protocol to be used by police officers who investigate these difficult crimes.
  • Using money forfeited by criminals and at no cost to taxpayers, donated steel-frame beds to the emergency shelter serving victims of domestic violence to replace old wooden beds that were difficult to clean.
  • Has been actively involved with Take Back the Night — an annual event to raise awareness of domestic and sexual violence against women and support the healing process for abuse survivors — since its inception more than two decades ago, receiving an award for his dedication to this cause.

Protecting Senior Citizens

  • Formed a Financial Crimes Prosecution Unit to assist those who are the victims of financial exploitation, theft, and identity theft or loan fraud with an emphasis on protecting senior citizens.
  • Secured an 8-year sentence for a public official who raided the bank accounts of an elderly citizen he had befriended and then used $200,000 of her money to fund his personal business, buy a luxury vehicle and pay for personal home repairs.
  • Meets regularly with senior citizen groups to educate them about financial scams, identity theft, and other important safety issues.

Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow speaking with seniors in Crest Hill about financial scams.

Battling Street Gangs and Illegal Drugs

  • Leads the fight with HERO/HELPS to warn parents, educators, and teens about the deadly dangers of using heroin. Works with police to aggressively prosecute heroin dealers as well as government leaders to grapple with this public health crisis.
  • Authored a groundbreaking synthetic marijuana ban to keep this dangerous poison off our store shelves and away from our children.
  • Spearheaded the creation of the Will County Drug Court, which has helped hundreds of non-violent offenders kick their addictions and return to society as productive citizens.
  • Opened three Recovery Homes through Drug Court to assist men and women who are nearing the completion of this intensive program: the Miller Taylor House and Julie Ann House to provide temporary housing, and most recently, the Connor Kelly Residence in 2019 to provide longer-term transitional housing.
  • Formed Will County’s first Gang Prosecution Unit and organized gang sweeps that reduced local gang shootings dramatically in the 1990s and were featured on Peter Jennings’ World News Tonight.
  • Authored several Gang Awareness and Prevention books, called “the primary primer on gangs” by the Chicago Tribune.

Reaching Out To Veterans

  • Established a Veterans Court to provide critical counseling and treatment to those who served our Nation and struggle with mental health and substance abuse disorders.
  • Using money forfeited to the state by criminals, purchased a new ADA-accessible shuttle bus and a van for use by the Veterans Assistance Commission of Will County to transport local veterans from Joliet to Hines VA Hospital where they receive necessary medical services.
  • Established a Valentines for Veteran Program with local schools in which children made handmade valentines that were given to veterans throughout Will County through the Will County Veterans Assistance Commission.

State’s Attorney Glasgow visiting 1st-4th graders at Woodland Elementary in Joliet as part of his Valentines for Veterans Initiative.

Protecting Our Animal Companions

  • Wrote Illinois’ Animal Torture Statute, which created the first felony charge in the State for the abuse and torture of animals.
  • Established a specialized Animal Protection Unit in the Will County State’s Attorney’s office to prosecute cases of animal abuse and neglect.
  • Created The League of Extraordinary Canines & Friends, a countywide initiative to combat animal cruelty and abuse through advocacy, communication, and cooperative efforts with animal humane and rescue organizations, the specialized Animal Protection Unit, the law enforcement community, and all local units of government.
  • Partnered with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to host training sessions to help investigators, animal control professionals, and animal rescue organizations identify and effectively report signs of animal cruelty and neglect.

Other Important Initiatives

  • Created the Adult Redeploy Illinois Court to keep non-violent offenders out of prison and reintegrate them back into the workforce.
  • Established a Mental Health Court to address criminal cases that are complicated by defendants who suffer from mental illness.
  • Formed a Crime Prevention Bureau that travels the county to educate citizens about gang violence, financial scams, Internet safety, and drug abuse prevention.
  • Hosts regular Community Blood Drives to ensure that the local blood supply is replenished.
  • Through the use of funds forfeited by criminals and at no cost to taxpayers, provided K9 officers and their equipment to numerous municipalities throughout Will County.
  • Provided vans to The Boys & Girls Club of Joliet, the Spanish Community Center, and the Forest Park Community Center to enable these organizations to provided needed transportation to children and other members of our community, using money forfeited by criminals and at no cost to taxpayers.

Awards

Senior Services of Will County
2020 Lifetime Achievement Award

Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF)
2020 America’s Top Ten Animal Defenders

State Representative Natalie Manley
2019 Person of Distinction Award

Childerguild & Silver Cross Hospital
2017 George Sangmeister Medal of Excellence for Community Service

Illinois State Crime Commission
2016 Career Achievement Award

Will County Regional Office of Education
2015 Friends of Education Award for dedicated service to students and education

Illinois State Crime Commission
2015 State’s Attorney of the Year

Will County Take Back the Night
2014 Award of Recognition for efforts to support annual vigil and march, and for raising awareness about violence against women

Chicago Metropolitan Battered Women’s Network
2013 Community Advocate Award for Outstanding Leadership and Contribution in the Work against Domestic Violence

United Hellenic Voters of America
2013 Man of the Year Award in recognition for distinguished service to the State of Illinois and Community at Large

Illinois State Crime Commission
2012 State’s Attorney of the Year

Chicago Crime Commission
2012 Stars of Distinction Mitchell A. Mars Prosecutorial Excellence Award

Illinois State Crime Commission
2008 State’s Attorney of the Year

Will County Veterans Assistance Commission
2008 Chairman’s Award for making an outstanding contribution to Will County Veterans

Illinois State Crime Commission
1996 State’s Attorney of the Year

United States Department of the Treasury
1996 Award of Appreciation of past and ongoing assistance and cooperation with Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service in the investigation and prosecution of tax violations

Will County Juvenile Officers Association
1995 Award of Appreciation for leading in the prevention and education programs of Dare, Character Education, Great, and Child Advocacy