Coghlan wins re-election bid for state’s attorney

By Caryn Rosenberg

Republican Michael Coghlan was voted into his second term as DeKalb County state’s attorney Tuesday over Democratic candidate Richard Schmack.

Coghlan captured 60 percent of DeKalb County votes, walking away with 19,325 votes.

Schmack received a total of 12,748 votes.

Coghlan said one of his main goals for his second term will be to promote a more active public. He said people should be “aware” of rising crime in DeKalb.

“I want to involve the community in addressing the issue of street gangs and increase the reporting and prosecution of domestic violence and child abuse,” he said.

Coghlan admitted that the gang problem in DeKalb County has gotten worse over the last several years, but said he is combatting it.

However, because of his accomplishments during his first term, Coghlan said there is “really nothing that I would do differently.”

Coghlan said in his first term, he “doubled the jail population, doubled child support collection and the staff morale has been very high.”

One of the programs Coghlan implemented in his first term was the “no drop” policy. This policy discourages women from dropping abuse charges once they are filed, he said.

Coghlan served as DeKalb County first assistant state’s attorney from 1986 to 1988 and prosecuted felony cases during that time.

Schmack said earlier he would have decreased the amount of time it takes a case to get through the court system and appointed a first assistant to run the criminal division of his office.

Schmack was a DeKalb County assistant state’s attorney under former State’s Attorney Phil DiMarzio. Schmack was responsible for misdemeanor and traffic prosecution.