Lake County candidate has other name — and arrests — in his past
BY NATASHA KORECKI and dan rozek Staff Reporters October 25, 2012 7:36PM
Michael Carbone is running for Lake County Board.
Updated: November 27, 2012 11:12AM
Michael Carbone is running for Lake County Board on a promise to lower property taxes, create jobs and keep the workings of government transparent.
But it’s Carbone’s own past that is murky.
For most of his life — including at Antioch High School, where he graduated — he was known as Michael Jorudd.
Under that name, he racked up criminal arrests and charges that include driving on a suspended license, criminal trespass to property, assault and two DUI charges.
In an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times, Carbone insisted that the fact he’s now using a different name doesn’t mean he’s trying to hide anything.
“We went through the process, and I came up victorious every time,” he said of his bouts with the law. “I was young, a different age. People aren’t perfect. I never said I was perfect. I am not a perfect person.”
Carbone, who lives in Round Lake, is 39. He says Askeland Carbone was his birth name, and he’d always vowed to reclaim the Carbone name to honor his grandfather. He said Jorudd was his step-dad’s name.
When asked about an arrest history, he described his brushes with the law as incidents in the mid 1990s “or early 2000.”
Court records show that under the name Jorudd, he was charged with DUI in 1993 and received court supervision.
But they also show that in February 2006 — three years before he ran for school board — Michael Jorudd was charged with DUI. He later pleaded guilty to reckless driving, according to county records. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined $1,500, according to records.
Earlier this year, a Lake County Chancery Court moved to demolish a structure he owned in Ingleside because it was in a “dangerous, unsafe and dilapidated condition.” He later obtained a permit to remodel the structure and the county subsequently dropped its bid to demolish.
The chancery court filing lists both names: Michael Jorudd with a notation that he is also known as Michael Carbone.
Carbone, who is running as a Republican, said he legally changed his name in 2009. That’s the year that Carbone won election as a write-in candidate for school board “citing his concerns over increasing property taxes and lack of transparency,” his Web bio indicates.
Lake County records show a civil filing to change the name of a minor related to Carbone, whose last name was changed to Askeland Carbone from Jorudd. The petition lists Michael Jorudd and his wife as submitting the request for the minor, but records in Lake County did not show Carbone’s own petition. His real estate broker license is listed under Carbone, but his 2011 tax bill is addressed to Michael Jorudd, records show. He did notify the Illinois Secretary of State’s office of a name change on March 5, 2009 — from Michael R. Jorudd to Michael R.A. Carbone.
Though Carbone initially spoke with the Sun-Times, he did not respond to follow-up calls.
In 2003, he was charged with criminal trespass to land and assault for what he described as an incident at a bar.
“I was in a bar. There was a situation that occurred with an under-aged drinker giving me a hard time,” he said. “I said, I’m not going to leave. The law states that if somebody asks you to leave a business and you don’t (it’s trespassing). That’s the law. Assault was because two bartenders grabbed me … I told them they didn’t have a right to hit me.”
Records show he was given 30 hours community service and one-year supervision on the trespassing charge and that the assault charge was dropped.
His opponent in the Nov. 6 election, however, said Carbone has been far from open about his situation.
“The only name we’ve ever known him by is Michael Carbone,” said Lake County Board member Terry Wilke, a Democrat whom Carbone is challenging. “I’m a little unclear if he were to win — how would he take the seat? It’s not his real name … The whole thing is so weird that it’s disconcerting to me. It’s not for me to judge anybody, that’ll be up to the voters.”
On a candidate’s questionnaire for this election cycle posted online by the Daily Herald, Carbone was asked if he were ever arrested for or convicted of a crime.
“Candidate did not respond,” says the online posting.
Carbone’s name is well known in parts of Lake County, where he’s made headlines as a lightning rod as a school board member for Grayslake Community Consolidated Schools District 46. The board voted to censure him in 2011 because he allegedly tried to get a password to a district computer system to find out if teachers were ditching class to attend pro-union rallies in Madison. Carbone denied wrongdoing.
“The trouble with things is no one’s perfect,” Carbone told the Sun-Times. “I’ve made my mistakes in life. I think what people will learn is hopefully you’ll learn from them and don’t repeat them over.”
Carbone said he’s worked with Carbone Group Inc. for 10 years.
He says Jorudd was his stepfather’s name, and Askeland Carbone is his birth name. He said it was his grandfather’s wish that he carry on the Carbone name. He said he changed his name to Askeland Carbone in 2009. He holds a real estate managing broker license under the name of Michael Robert Askeland Carbone, according to state records.
And he says his past arrest record has nothing to do with his current race.
“I would think most people would be forthright about a name change or a criminal record — especially if I were running for office,” Wilke said.
“I’ve had one name my entire life. I don’t change my name when I run for office to hide things or not to hide things.”