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Quincy man suspended from job after email surfaces suggesting a rape cover-up

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QUINCY (WGEM) — A Quincy man was suspended from his job Wednesday following the release of an email that suggested he helped cover up a rape in Champaign, Illinois.

The Chief Legal Counsel from the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board said Forrest Ashby's contract was suspended after reports surfaced that Ashby helped cover up a rape and kept quiet about ghost jobs in the state.

Mike McClain

John Keigher said Ashby had worked for the board as a consultant on correctional officer training protocols since September of last year.

The email that sparked Ashby's suspension was written in 2012 by Mike McClain, a former Quincy lawmaker, longtime lobbyist and confidant of Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan.

In the email, McClain wrote that Ashby, " a good compliance person, as I told you... He has kept his mouth shut on Jones' ghost workers, the rape in Champaign and other items. He is loyal to the administration."

The email recently surfaced as part of a Freedom of Information Request by Chicago radio station WBEZ.

Governor Pritzker addressed the allegations on Thursday saying that a full investigation was needed.

"We need to do an investigation and find out what the real facts are and then we have to hold those accountable who are responsible for perpetrating either the crime, the cover up or the threats associated in that email."

Gov. J.B. Pritzker - (D) Illinois

Information about the alleged rape is still unknown. Pritzker said officials in then-Governor Quinn's office should have come forward when they received the email back in 2012.

Pritzker said his office has handed the investigation over to the proper authorities.

Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady asked Illinois State Police Director Brendan Kelly to investigate the email.

"You are the lead law enforcement officer in the state of Illinois, and I believe the people of Illinois, the victim, and the seriousness of this issue demands that your agency conduct a full and thorough investigation," Brady wrote to Kelly on Thursday.

Meanwhile, House Republican Leader Jim Durkin sent a letter to House Speaker Michael Madigan, calling for a House investigation into the matter.

Madigan said no, stating that due to the sensitivity of the matter for any potential survivors the General Assembly shouldn't interfere in the investigation. You can read Madigan's full response below.

WGEM News made multiple efforts to reach Ashby but was unsuccessful.

Mike McClain also did not respond to messages.

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