Longtime southern Illinois judge Brocton Lockwood dies - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Longtime southern Illinois judge Brocton Lockwood dies

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HERRIN -- A longtime judge and lawyer in southern Illinois, famously known for bringing down corrupt judges in Chicago, has passed away.

Brocton Lockwood spent several decades working in Williamson and Saline counties and even served as an FBI informant in the 80s.

SIU professor John Jackson met Judge Lockwood several times.

"He was a colorful guy. He was fun to listen to," Jackson said.

Lockwood had a decades-long career in law enforcement, serving as a judge in Williamson County between 1978 and 1983.

"People knew of his stature and integrity and people had a great deal of respect for him," Jackson said.

In 1981, he had to serve in the Cook County court system, a common thing for southern Illinois justices at the time, and it was there that he noticed heavy corruption in the traffic court.

"So he contacted the U.S. Attorney and they fitted him out with a wire and he did all kinds of recording of illegal activities by judges and court officials," Jackson said.

The FBI dubbed it "Operation Greylord" and it played out over three years, resulting in the convictions of nearly 100 people, including 13 judges and 51 attorneys.

"All of 'Operation Greylord' is the stuff of which books are written and movies are made," Jackson said.

Lockwood returned to private practice in Marion after "Operation Greylord".

He became a judge again in 2000, this time in Saline County, and set up the first drug court in southern Illinois.

"Drug courts are one way to handle the problem that can overwhelm the judicial system," Jackson said.

Lockwood retired in 2006, receiving several honors for his work and going on speaking tours until he died Monday at the age of 74 after a battle with Parkinson's disease.

From Crain's Funeral Home:

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Southern Illinois Parkinson Support Group, P. O. Box 266, Carbondale IL, 62903. Said donations are designated and forwarded for Parkinson's disease research, Hospice of Southern Illinois, 204 Halfway Road, Marion, IL 62959, or to your charity of choice.

As a special note of sincere thanks and gratitude, the family wishes to acknowledge Dr. Donald Griffin, Dr. Jeffrey Parks, the staff at Parkway Manor, and especially the nurses and CNAS of Garden Court for the exceptional care, attention and compassion they provided.

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