Thursday, June 18, 2009

Democratic ward boss Cullerton's husband charged after cocaine allegedly falls out of his pocket
June 17, 2009

BY RUMMANA HUSSAIN Criminal Courts Reporter
The husband of a Democratic ward boss was hit with drug charges after a small packet of cocaine fell out of his pocket at the downtown County Building and a coworker spotted it, authorities said.

Cameras captured the cocaine falling from Kevin O'Brien's back pocket Tuesday. He admitted it was his, sheriff's spokesman Steve Patterson said.

O'Brien has worked for the county assessor's office for over 20 years, office spokesman Eric Herman said. He has been placed on administrative leave.

O'Brien is married to P.J. Cullerton, Democratic committeeman of the Northwest Side's 38th Ward, a source said.

P.J. Cullerton is the scion of a political dynasty with power stretching back just before the Chicago Fire of 1871. Family members sat on the City Council for 107 years in what became known as "The Cullerton seat."

Cullerton's father, Thomas, who died in 1993, was the last. Other family members include P. J. "Parky" Cullerton, who was elected county assessor in 1958, and state Sen. John Cullerton, who was named Senate president last year.

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