GENEVA – Kane County Circuit Judge James Murphy announced that he will retire in July after serving 12 ½ years on the bench, officials announced in a news release.
Murphy was first elected in 2008, and was retained by the voters in 2016 and 2020.
Murphy was first assigned to Aurora Branch Court handling traffic and misdemeanors, then he handled civil cases and probate matters from 2009 until 2012.
In 2012, he was assigned to a special courtroom where he handled civil cases in which money damages involving more $50,000 are sought.
He is currently in that assignment, and from 2013 through 2020, Murphy was Presiding Judge of the Civil Division.
Murphy served as a mentor with the state of Illinois New Judge Mentoring Program and has mentored four new judges in the circuit.
Murphy stated in a news release that he had enjoyed all of his assignments, in particular the professionalism of court staff, including court administrators, clerks, bailiffs, law librarians, staff attorneys and paralegals.
He further complimented the attorneys who appeared at motions and hearings in his courtrooms.
“I have great respect for the professional abilities of the attorneys in these civil cases,” Murphy said in the release. “They have highly talented legal writing skills as well as exhibit strong advocacy for their clients in areas of law that are often quite complicated.”
Murphy said that he felt fortunate to have been assigned to the Old Courthouse in Geneva for almost his entire career as a judge.
“The courthouse is a beautiful old building, and it’s great to see lawyers and litigants returning to in-person settlement conferences and trials after so many months with remote hearings due to the pandemic,” Murphy said. “Third Street and downtown have been missed, too, and it’s good that the local restaurants and stores are getting back to pre-pandemic levels.”
As a result of Murphy’s upcoming vacancy, there will be an election for Circuit Judge in the First Sub-circuit of the Sixteenth Circuit in 2022, the release stated.
Candidates for election must be attorneys and residents of the sub-circuit, which covers parts of Montgomery, Aurora, and North Aurora, and unincorporated parts of Aurora Township.
Supreme Court Justice Michael Burke is expected to make an appointment soon to fill the vacancy until the 2022 election.