The McHenry County States Attorneys office unsealed hundreds of search warrant files that had previously been kept sealed. Most counties make search warrant files open to the public. Except for McHenry County which keeps them sealed even after charges are filed or are not filed. Last year, a judge in St. Clair County, ruled in a lawsuit involving a newspaper that such files should be made public unless they jeopardize an ongoing investigation. McHenry County State's Attorney Louis Bianchi sought the opinion of the Illinois Attorney General which advised his office that once warrants have been served, they should be made open to the public. Bianchi's office has poured over hundreds of files to see if they contained any information which would jeopardize any ongoing investigations and released 248 files. Only 20 files were kept sealed after it was determined that they contained sensitive information that would jeopardize ongoing investigations. Most of the files unsealed contained information regarding drug investigations, investigations involving murders, embezzlement and an illegal fowl hunting investigation.
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