Cook County court building named after famed Judge

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After decades of merely being known as 26th and California, the Cook County Criminal Courts building on Chicago's southwest side has been officially named "The Honorable George N. Leighton Criminal Court Building."

Members of the Cook County Board voted unanimously Thursday to rename the building after the 99-year-old Leighton — a county judge who was the first African American to sit on the Illinois Appellate Court, and later was named a federal judge.

Leighton wasn't at the meeting, but his daughter, son-in-law and grandson were in attendance.

Cook County Circuit Court Chief Judge Tim Evans, who was a student of Leighton's when he taught at Chicago's John Marshall Law School, called the renaming of the building a well-deserved honor. He added that Leighton was his "star in the judicial constellation."

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