Accused Rapist Of Disabled Woman Charged With 20 Counts, Released On $400 Bond

Cook County Judge Stanley Hill lowered Burnell Johnson's bond to $400 at the suggestion of Johnson's sister.

Chicago, IL – A Cook County Circuit Court judge released an accused rapist on just $400 bond, after asking the defendant’s sister, a former court clerk, how much she could afford, according to court transcripts.

Burnell Johnson, 60, has been indicted on 20 felony counts for the alleged sexual assault of a disabled woman who suffers from cerebral palsy, CWB reported.

According to prosecutors, Johnson met the 33-year-old unnamed victim while he was working as a Cook County Pace bus driver.

The victim is also visually impaired, has the mental functioning of a six-year-old, and depended on the bus to transport her to and from her cerebral palsy treatment center, CWB reported.

She also suffers from “brain damage…and difficulty using her right arm,” police reports noted, according to WBBM.

Johnson allegedly groomed the victim for two weeks, and eventually exchanged phone numbers with her, the Chicago Sun Times reported.

He also instructed her to send him nude photographs of herself, and to delete the messages from her phone.

Johnson told the woman to keep their relationship a secret, prosecutors said.

On Jan. 10, Johnson dropped off all of his other passengers, then drove the woman to an off-route location in Oak Park.

He covered the on-board camera with his hat, then proceeded to sexually assault her, prosecutors said.

Although the hat prevented the camera from capturing any images, the audio was unobstructed.

“[Expletive] me,” Johnson told her in the recording, according to WBBM. “I know you’re getting hot.”

Johnson also raped the woman on at least one other occasion, prosecutors said.

Later in January, the woman told an employee at the treatment center that she was worried she had sent a nude photograph to the wrong person by mistake, the Chicago Sun Times reported.

When the worker asked her who she intended to send the image to, she said she meant for it to go to Johnson.

According to prosecutors, the victim has an IQ of 47, and is unable to give consent due to her mental capacity, WBBM reported.

On June 9, Johnson was charged with three counts of criminal sexual abuse and two counts of criminal sexual assault-consent, CWB reported.

Two Cook County judges ordered that he be held without bail.

But on June 15, Johnson appeared before Cook County Circuit Court Judge Stanley Hill, WBBM reported.

During the hearing, Johnson’s attorney told Hill that the family could afford to post $400 bond, according to court transcripts.

“Are there any youngsters in the home?” Hill asked.

“No. Just with me,” a woman in the gallery interjected.

The woman was Johnson’s sister, Maxine Johnson, who happens to be a retired court clerk who worked in the same building as Hill.

“What is it, Maxine? What?” Hill asked her directly.

She then suggested that Hill set her brother’s bond at $400.

“It’s not proper, and shouldn’t be done,” WBBM legal analyst Irv Miller said. “I’ve seen thousands of bond hearings. I have never seen a judge call out into a gallery, to someone by their first name, who happens to be a family member of the defendant in front of them.”

“That has the appearance of impropriety,” Miller added. “That judge isn’t supposed to know the family of the defendant when he’s setting a bond.”

Johnson subsequently walked out of jail after posting $400 – which was the 10 percent requirement of his $4,000 bail, CWB reported.

He was also placed on electronic monitoring, but Hill soon lifted that requirement as well.

On July 9th, approximately 10 days after Hill nixed Johnson’s electronic monitoring requirement, the accused rapist violated his court-ordered curfew.

The following day, a Cook County grand jury indicted him with seven felony counts of criminal sexual assault of a handicapped victim, three felony counts of criminal sexual assault – unable to give consent, seven felony counts of criminal sexual abuse of a handicapped victim, and three felony counts of criminal sexual abuse – unable to give consent.

The case was subsequently reassigned to Cook County Circuit Court Judge Pamela Leeming, who reimposed an electronic monitoring requirement the following day.

“I find that the bond is set too low,” Leeming declared on July 26, according to WBBM.

She raised his bond to $40,000, which required him to pay an additional $3,600, CWB reported.

It is unclear when Johnson is due back in court.

Comments (42)
No. 1-23
Nielkyleevankate
Nielkyleevankate

What the hell? Our brave officers face these creeps, arrest them, then watch them walk away for $400? A travesty.

Bonneville Kid
Bonneville Kid

I spent many years of my 40 in LE, working in the court system. I have witnessed and been part of 1000's of bail motions, but I can safely say this is one of the most foolish decisions and court proceedings ever! This should have been a 100k bail, period.

MarineDoc
MarineDoc

One has to wonder just how well Cook County Judge Stanley Hill knew Maxine Johnson, and in way way did they know each other? Sounds like there is more to them just meeting in the hallway! Hill should be tossed off the bench and an ethics investigation started!

angeleyes
angeleyes

disgusting excuse for a human. How does a judge who sees the dregs of society, allow this thing out on a low bond because he knows the sister. I don't know how they do things there but ethics committee needs to be notified of this as well as the ABA (I know they have a bar association).

JBo
JBo

"...Maxine Johnson, who happens to be a retired court clerk who worked in the same building as [Judge] Hill."

Chicago court system. Nothing funny going on here...

dsmarine
dsmarine

There is more law breaking in Chicago than just people shooting each other!

RPG156
RPG156

You had me (convinced) at Cook County...

sturnman22
sturnman22

anything goes in Chicagoland,

Snooper
Snooper

A total travisty of the law. Lock the SOB up for at least one hundred years.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

alleged iq of 47, but has and can use a phone. hhhmmmmm.

nightangel00
nightangel00

Are you kidding me??? So, we now let defendants set their bond!!??? Why not pay them or let them pick the sentence too!??? SMH

THEDUKE
THEDUKE

"Cook County Judge Stanley Hill lowered Burnell Johnson's bond to $400 at the suggestion of Johnson's sister."

....yet another classic example of more "blacks in trouble with the law". This is an example of why you cannot trust blacks in using an unbiased decision making authority. Burnell is a vile subhuman who has taken premeditated advantage over a woman who was incapable of protecting herself. Blacks typically do not show an unbiased view and it then affects their decisions showing extreme leniency towards the black perpetrator....and just because the person is a fellow black. What happens to the woman? Why was this not shown on the news? Corruption in Chicago at its finest and typical "protection" to minimize the amount of negative news that is portrayed to the general public about blacks. Can you imagine if we were able to see the amount of "unfiltered" news?

Bigg59
Bigg59

And they ask why there are some many deaths in Chicago

Caroparks53
Caroparks53

Sickening. This judge should be fired or removed..i despise people who do this..he os evil and the sister is also..

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

There may have been a crime here, but I don't think it is so clear cut as you all are making out. It is not as easy to test someone's IQ as it is to check their age (and even that is sometimes difficult). Also, impaired motor skills does not prevent one from being able to consent to sex. Does the law set a clear standard of conduct in this area, or is it void for vagueness? Hopefully this guy has a good lawyer. Probably needs a judge trial -- juries tend to get carried away with their own sense of self-righteousness in these kinds of cases. If she had killed a cop, instead of had sex on a bus, then how many here would be howling for the death penalty?

America1st
America1st

I just looked this judge up and this isn’t anything new for him. He seems to have a law of his own. How does this guy keep his job?????????

artw44
artw44

They should be sharing a cell!

SICKOFITALL
SICKOFITALL

THE DAMN BASTARD JUDGE NEEDS TO BE PLACED IN THE SAME JAIL CELL AS THE RAPIST OF THIS DEFENDLESS WOMAN HOW DARE HE ASK THE DAMN SISTER WHAT SHE CAN AFFORD I DO NOT CARE IF THE BITCH ONCE WAS A COURT CLERK. PUT A BULLET IN THE RAPIST HEAD AND THEN WE WILL KNOW HE WILL NOT RAPE AGAIN. BLOW HIM AWAY.

61mouse
61mouse

Sgt.Voight and the intelligence crew would have taken care of him at the Silos

IronRick
IronRick

My brothers murderer was set free in 1979 after 8 witnesses testified against the killer as well as 2 cops who were driving by and seen the guy running with a 10 in. Butcher Knife covered in blood. My brother was a businessman who was moving to Florida with his wife and daughters to open a new shop. The killer was a Illegal drug dealer who had money and the judge was paid off. This was during the time of the Greylord investigation. The day before the judge was to be indicted he had a massive heart attack. It’s a shame he never spent a dayin jail. I’m leaving this hellhole of a ‘city’ in the sping.

Jackie Primrose
Jackie Primrose

What the hell is going on in our courts.When a totally disabled women is raped and no one is watching out for her this world has gone to hell I wish the judge would get gang raped or maybe his loved one he may get how violent a rape is.This poor young girl will never get over this Nothing like having a a- hole buddy working in the court system.

Buzzsaw79
Buzzsaw79

That judge should be kicked off the bench for what he did. That rappist should have done to him what they do in the middle east. A glass tube inserted into the penis and broken, he will never think of doing that again.

theresa3742
theresa3742

black gheeto trash.