Michael Hood | Chief of Investigations and Intelligence
Michael Hood was named chief of Investigations and Intelligence on January 16, 2013.
Hood joined the Illinois Department of Corrections after serving as deputy attorney general for Criminal Justice from the Office of the Illinois Attorney General. As deputy attorney general, he led the Attorney General's Criminal Enforcement, Investigations and Crime Victims Services Divisions in the coordination of the office's crime-fighting activities with federal, state, county and local authorities.
Hood previously served as an assistant state’s attorney for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in Chicago. He also served in the positions of supervisor of the 2nd Municipal District, deputy supervisor of the Traffic Division, and as an assistant in the Cold Case Homicide Unit and the Felony Trial Division.
Hood served on active duty through the rank of major in the U.S. Marine Corps. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois and the DePaul College of Law.
Scope of Responsibilities
The Investigations Unit maintains the integrity of the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC). Maintaining integrity in a public safety organization is essential to earning the respect of society. IDOC strives to prevent, address and combat misconduct. The Investigations Unit is under the direct supervision of the Director’s Office and is responsible for handling serious offenses and allegations that cannot be handled at the institutional level. The unit investigates both administrative and criminal matters regarding staff, inmates and even the public when there is a vested interest with the department.
The chief of Investigations and Intelligence oversees the Investigations Unit, which is comprised of an investigations commander, deputy commanders and investigators. The unit investigates charges of criminal acts by correctional employees with assistance from the Illinois State Police, Division of Internal Investigation, where appropriate. The unit objectively conducts thorough, impartial and timely investigations to determine the validity of allegations. The results of these inquiries may provide a basis for criminal prosecution, corrective administrative action, or both.
The Investigations Unit pursues disobedience diligently. Additionally, investigators work vigorously to exonerate those they find wrongfully accused while actively seeking prosecution of those making malicious and false accusations.
The Investigations Unit is provided complete, unrestricted access to all department documents, facilities, staff, records and any other information related to complaints and special independent investigations. Based on the sensitive nature of the subject matter, the Investigations Unit is responsible for the strict adherence of confidentiality. All reports generated by the Investigations Unit are reviewed by supervisory staff and then forwarded to the chief of Investigations and Intelligence for final review and approval.
Central Intelligence Unit
To eradicate gang activity from the department, the state legislature authorized and mandated the agency to develop an Intelligence Unit. In compliance with House Bill 4124, the department established the Central Intelligence Unit (CIU) in 1999.
It is the primary mission of the CIU to collect, identify, enter and disseminate information involving individuals or groups of individuals, both within and outside of the department, who pose a threat to the safety of the public, staff and inmates and to the security and orderly management of a correctional facility.
The chief of Investigations and Intelligence also oversees the CIU, which is comprised of an intelligence commander and deputy commanders, who also serve as the department’s law enforcement liaisons. Institutional Intelligence Units are located at all Level 1 through Level 7 facilities throughout the state. District intelligence coordinators oversee 28 facility intelligence units throughout the department, the Parole Division and administrative duties, respectively. The CIU also includes the Intelligence Center, which serves as a central repository for intelligence reports and their analysis and dissemination. The center is staffed by intelligence officers and serves as a point of contact for outside law enforcement.
Security threat groups (STGs) are not new to Illinois institutions and is a serious issue. CIU has established that approximately 53 percent of the entire male prison population and approximately 13 percent of the entire female population have been documented as affiliated with a STG.
STGs within the correctional setting attempt to function similarly to that of STGs in the community. They offer protection, financial reward and access to drugs and other contraband. By their very nature, STGs are predatory, thus influencing virtually every major management decision.
IDOC recognizes that the unregulated activities of these criminal enterprises pose a direct threat to public safety and the safety and security of each custodial facility and undermine the public confidence of the department to carry out its mission for the citizens of Illinois.
Since the formation of the CIU and the subsequent formation of the institutional Intelligence Units, the number of gang-related incidents within the department has dramatically declined. Gang-related assaults on both staff and inmates have become nearly non-existent. This decline in gang-related incidents is due largely to the proactive posture established by the CIU.
The CIU includes a team of STG specialists who have extensive knowledge of gangs and gang activity. The STG specialists are routinely called upon for their input and knowledge by CIU staff and outside law enforcement.
Additionally, the CIU continues to conduct parole operations, referred to as Parole Police Compliance Checks (PPCC). These operations are performed throughout the state with the assistance of the requesting law enforcement agency. The purpose of these operations is to ensure compliance with parole requirements. One of the objectives is to ensure parolees are not contributing and participating in local criminal and gang activity. PPCC operations range from initiating contact with a single parolee up to mass numbers of parolees. As a result of these operations, numerous local, state and federal law enforcement agencies have recovered large quantities of contraband, including narcotics and firearms as well as obtained information, which ultimately has been helpful with on-going criminal investigations.
As IDOC law enforcement liaisons, the deputy commanders schedule visits between offenders and parolees and outside law enforcement agencies, schedule and supervise PPCCs as well as conduct law enforcement operations in and outside the department.
The CIU commander is associated with the U.S. Marshals Great Lakes Fugitive Task Force, the Chicago Police Department Superintendent Community Violence Forum and the Illinois State Police LEADS Advisory Board. The deputy commanders are associated with the Joint Terrorist Task Force, the National Major Gangs Task Force and the FBI National Academy Association.
The unit has established an excellent rapport with outside law enforcement agencies and has assisted them with information regarding narcotics, robberies, extortion, conspiracy and homicides in addition to providing information regarding security threat group activity.
The primary objective of the unit is to assist the department in maintaining the safety of our facilities for both the staff who work and inmates who live in them. Working closely with the Parole Division and outside law enforcement is beneficial to the overall mission of promoting public safety.