Published Monday, March 22, 2010 | 1:42 p.m.
Updated Monday, March 22, 2010 | 5:04 p.m.
A jury was seated Monday in the trial of Lacy Thomas, the former director of University Medical Center who is on trial this week on charges of theft and misconduct.
Seven men and seven women, including two alternates, will hear the case against the former UMC boss, who prosecutors say cost the county hospital an estimated $10 million in no-bid and no-work contracts. They say he gave the contracts to friends and associates in Chicago, where he ran the John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital, formerly called Cook County Hospital.
Thomas, indicted by a grand jury in February 2008, has pleaded not guilty to the five counts of felony theft and five counts of felony misconduct of a public officer against him. If convicted, he could be sentenced to decades behind bars.
Opening arguments are set to begin at 10 a.m. Tuesday in front of District Court Judge Michael P. Villani. Witnesses expected to testify Tuesday include, among others, County Counsel Mary-Anne Miller and County Manager Virginia Valentine.
County commissioners fired Thomas in January 2007 for mismanagement. He was hired in 2004.
The trial is expected to last at least a week and a half.
- Lacy Thomas’ rising star came crashing down with firing (3-18-10)
- Former UMC chief set to stand trial on theft, misconduct charges (3-18-10)
- A black eye in medicine brings posturing, again (4-9-2009)
- Testimony: Thomas boldly cut iffy deals (2-26-2008)
- Indictment says UMC chief made no-work deals (2-21-2008)
- Former UMC boss indicted (2-20-2008)
- DA will go after former UMC boss (1-04-2008)