Metro-East News

Kelvin Ellis’ hearing on parole violation set for May 24

Kelvin Ellis
Kelvin Ellis MBR

One of prison-bound and former East St. Louis Township supervisor Oliver Hamilton’s advisers could also face incarceration for meeting with him and working for another felon who ran last year for state representative.

Kelvin Ellis, who pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice, will go before a magistrate judge May 24 for violating the terms of his parole, for meeting with another felon — Hamilton. He could also have to answer for taking $4,000 from controversial Belleville radio show host and convicted felon Bob Romanik, who paid Ellis on three separate occasions last year for “campaign work.”

Romanik, who lost the election, was a candidate for state representative from the 114th District. At the time, felons could run for state office but not for municipal positions.

Roamnik, who was convicted of conspiracy to obstruct justice in East St. Louis federal court nearly 20 years ago, declined to comment. He completed his sentence and supervised release years ago and is no longer restricted from meeting with anyone.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Clifford Proud will decide whether a meeting between Ellis, Hamilton, and newly-elected District 189 School Board member LaKeisha N. Adams at a Caseyville fast-food restaurant in April violated the stipulation that Ellis not associate with known felons. The meeting was photographed by the FBI, and the color image was included in the government’s motion to ask for a revocation hearing for Ellis.

Hamilton had already pleaded guilty before the meeting with Ellis. Hamilton has been ordered to report to prison next week by the Bureau of Prisons, which has a policy against stating exactly when a defendant must report and where.

Ellis, the former East St. Louis director of Regulatory Affairs, also worked as a consultant and grant writer for East St. Louis Township before Hamilton resigned after the criminal charges were filed against him.

Ellis was sentenced for tax evasion, tampering with a witness and obstruction of justice. He approved a plot to murder a federal witness in a corruption case against him, according to court documents. Federal agents staged a photograph purporting to show the witness, a woman, shot to death at Horseshoe Lake. The witness was not hurt.

Ellis also was accused of running an escort service out of East St. Louis City Hall, collecting thousands of dollars in rent for a building he didn’t own, and failing to report income to the Internal Revenue Service.

In 2016, The News-Democrat published a series of investigative articles that reported Hamilton spent $230,000 on a publicly supported American Express card for items such as building supplies and gasoline, new tires for a tractor for his construction company, trips to Las Vegas with his wife, travel throughout the southern states including to property he owns in Mississippi, a boat trip on the Chicago River, and several thousand dollars for detailing and washing his personal pickup truck.

Beth Hundsdorfer: 618-239-2570, @bhundsdorfer

George Pawlaczyk: 618-239-2625, @gapawlaczyk