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Newspaper Page Text
THE WHEELS OF JUSTICE IN CHICAGO
There probably is no single institution in Chicago of which the
people as a whole know less than our municipal courts.. Few, of
the happenings in those courts get into the newspapers, and such
as do get into them are not told in a human fashion. Occur
rences involving more prominent people than those that wander
through the mills of the municipal courts use up the space around
the advertisements in the big newspapers And yet the
municipal courts are called the people's courts, and you can see
more real human nature, more tragedy, more humor, in one fay.
in one of them than you can in a year in one of the higher courts. '
This is the record of one day in the tumbling, ramshackle South
Clark street court, presided over by Judge Hopkins.
Policemen, attorneys and re
porters lounging around the din
Jgy room. On one side the prison
ers, the majority of them shuf
fling, miserable specimens from
the underworld, a few of them
On the' other side the witnesses,
some frightened looking, some
I , "Huh !" said an attorney, "9:45
'and the judge isn't here yet'!
Wonder where he was last
x x"Wish he'd, come," said an
other.. "I've got an awful lot' of
work to do today. He should have
been here at 9."
j A reporter looked at the speak-
5 er and sneered.
''Who's -been dam' fool enough
Q to give you an awful lot of work
to do?" he inquired.
j The lawyer flushed and took a
. step forward.
" "You can't " he began..
And just then Judge Hopkins
entered the courtroom and the at
torney drew back and everyone
Aid. John Powers of the Nine
teenth drew Hopkins into a cor
ner and held a whispered, six
minute conversation with him.
All that was heard of what they
said was :
"Well, they -gave Denny Egan
Hopkins took the bench. The
"light" cases were called those
of business men and the like who
had been- caught with the lights
on their autos out. There were
fifteen of them. They all pleaded
guilty and all were soaked $2 and
"A man's light is out or it
isn't," explained City Prosecutor
Morris Barnett. "There' are no
complications. The defendant
cannot lay" the blame on others.
There are.no mitigating circum
stances. So they, all plead guilty,
and the city gets their little old
The light cases' disposed of and
the business men separated from
$30, the real business of the day
' The first cape called1 was "tfiaf o