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Local News

Cicero town president sued for libel by brother

CICERO – Cicero Town President Larry Dominick is facing yet another in a string of lawsuits filed against him, this time by his brother, Richard Dominick.

A lawsuit was filed in Cook County Circuit Court Friday alleging the town president libeled Richard Dominick in a March 2 interview published in the Morton College newspaper, The Morton Collegian.

In the interview, given just after Dominick's re-election, Dominick was asked if he was surprised that his brother, Richard, "has come out with several accusations and testified against you to the election board."

Larry Dominick replied: "No, me and my brother Rick used to get along ... and Rick is just a thief; he’s been stealing from my mother forever. My mother’s 89 years old now, she don’t even want him at her funeral. He doesn’t know that but I got it in writing."

Town spokesman Ray Hanania said while he has not personally seen the lawsuit, it didn't merit any consideration.

"His lawsuit is clearly politically motivated and filled with false accusations," Hanania said. "We have no comment on it. It's just a waste of our time."

There is an apparent rift between the brothers that goes back to 2009 when Richard Dominick sued the town president after he was allegedly fired from a town of Cicero board after talking to the IRS about his brother. Larry Dominick denies that his brother was fired for those reasons. The lawsuit is pending.

According to media reports, the new lawsuit claims Richard Dominick was discredited by his brother, Larry, who made false and defamatory statements. Richard Dominick is seeking more than $2 million in damages.

Earlier this month, Cicero settled on a $675,000 sexual harassment lawsuit filed against Larry Dominick over allegations he continuously made sexual advances toward former Cicero police officer Janidet Lujano and fondled her on occasion. Dominick allegedly also suggested Lujano participate in a threesome with another woman and himself.

Dominick maintains he never made such advances toward the former officer, according to Cicero spokesman Ray Hanania.

The settlement marks the second such sexual harassment case settled by Cicero involving Dominick and an employee. In 2011, Cicero paid a $500,000 settlement to the former head of the town animal shelter, Sharon Starzyk, who said Dominick groped or touched her inappropriately on several occasions.

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