For about 15 minutes on Wednesday morning, hundreds of motorists heading through downtown Joliet along Cass Street were inconvenienced by a stubborn motorist who turned out to Joliet attorney Edward Masters, the retired Will County Chief judge. Joliet Patch was working out of the Jitters Coffee House at the corner of Chicago and Cass Street using their WiFi service and witnessed the entire incident unfold around 11:30 a.m. A large truck was attempting to turn left from Cass Street onto Chicago Street to drop off a crane for this week’s demolition of a professional office building across from the Rialto. However, the truck driver needed a couple more feet to make the wide left-hand turn.

Retired Judge Ed Masters.

Posted by John Ferak on Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Several motorists behind Masters obliged. But Masters, who was at the stop light going north on Chicago Street, refused to back up. He sat in his car and rolled up his window and put his car in park for about 15 minutes. He just sat there. The situation became a spectacle. Several construction workers as well as people in the downtown tried to approach Masters to reason with him, to get him to politely back up his car, but he refused to budge an inch. The truck carrying the Alliance Demolition crane was stuck in traffic on Cass Street, causing a huge traffic snag for motorists trying to get across the Des Plaines River from Joliet’s east side. At one point, the driver remarked how he had been hauling equipment for 30 years and he had never encountered a situation like this involving a stubborn driver who refused to back up his car.

Eventually, around 11:45 a.m., two members of the Joliet Police Department arrived on the scene and spoke with Masters. They convinced him to back up his car peacefully without having to take Masters into custody. These days, Masters is an attorney in private practice.

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