APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, SECOND DISTRICT
ROBERT A. SPIZZO (Robert A. Spizzo et al.,
Gloria Langman et al., Respondents-Appellants)
522 N.E.2d 808, 168 Ill. App. 3d 487, 119 Ill. Dec. 146
Appeal from the Circuit Court of Du Page County; the Hon. Robert A. Cox and the Hon. Fredrick Henzi, Judges, presiding. 1988.IL.558
JUSTICE NASH delivered the opinion of the court. INGLIS and REINHARD, JJ., concur.
DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE NASH
Gloria Langman (wife) and her attorney, Lee A. Marinaccio, appeal from orders of the circuit court of Du Page County which awarded costs and attorney fees against them in favor of Robert A. Spizzo (husband), the guardian ad litem of the minor child, Robert Spizzo, Jr., and the child's paternal grandparents, Amelio and Celidea Spizzo, after a mistrial was declared by the court during a hearing of post-judgment petitions relating to visitation with the child by the husband and grandparents.
No appellee brief has been filed to assist this court, and we consider the appeal under the standards of First Capitol Mortgage Corp. v. Talandis Construction Corp. (1976), 63 Ill. 2d 128, 133, 345 N.E.2d 493.
The wife's petition for dissolution of marriage was granted in May 1982, and in September 1982 a judgment was entered which incorporated a marital settlement agreement. The settlement agreement provided that the wife have custody of their minor child, subject to the right of reasonable visitation by the husband. A dispute subsequently arose regarding the husband's right to visitation which resulted in numerous post-judgment proceedings.
On January 26, 1987, Judge Robert Cox commenced a combined hearing of the husband's petition to enforce visitation, the wife's petition to modify judgment by terminating visitation, a petition by the guardian ad litem of the child to modify or deny visitation, and four rules to show cause which had been entered by the court against the wife. At the outset of the proceedings, attorney Marinaccio, counsel for the wife, stated that his client had instructed him to orally move for a change in venue, because the wife felt that the Judge could not give her a fair hearing. When attorney Marinaccio offered to put his motion in writing, the Judge stated that if such a motion were filed it would be denied, and the parties then proceeded to a pretrial conference and a hearing in which several witnesses testified that day.
When the case was called for continuation of the hearing on the following morning, the wife's attorney informed Judge Cox that his client had caused a letter to be delivered to the Judicial Inquiry Board and, although counsel did not know the content or purpose of the letter, he felt he had an obligation to the Judge to inform ...