Two attorneys found dead in their Oak Park home on Monday night — including one who worked as a de facto judge in disciplinary cases involving Chicago police officers — were stabbed to death, authorities revealed Wednesday.
Thomas E. Johnson, 69, and Leslie Ann Jones, 67, died of multiple sharp force injuries, the Cook County medical examiner’s office said. Their deaths were ruled homicides.
Oak Park police responded to a well-being check about 7:30 p.m. to the couple’s house in the 500 block of Fair Oaks Avenue, near Chicago Avenue, and found the couple’s bodies inside, Oak Park spokesman David Powers said. Preliminary information gathered at the scene indicated “suspicious circumstances,” Powers said.
Johnson and Jones were husband-wife attorneys who worked in Chicago. They were partners at the law firm Johnson, Jones, Snelling, Gilbert & Davis.
Jones joined the firm in 1988 — founded by Johnson four years earlier — and specialized in health care, employment, zoning, civil rights and housing litigation. She earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from Yale University and her MBA from the University of Chicago. She attended Harvard University’s law school and taught ethics at Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law.
Johnson, who also attended Harvard’s law school, had been active in the Illinois legal community for more than four decades. He served as principal counsel for the mayoral campaigns of Harold Washington, Tim Evans and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia.
For seven years, Johnson worked with Evans — the chief judge in Cook County — to reform the county’s bail system, which led to a drastic reduction in the number of people held in the county jail before going to trial.
Johnson also had served as a Chicago Police Board hearing officer and presided over more than 350 administrative disciplinary cases, including the case of former officer Robert Rialmo, who mistakenly shot and killed Bettie Jones in 2015, and the cases of four other officers who were found to have lied about the Laquan McDonald shooting.
The West Suburban Major Crimes Task Force was investigating.