Leighton Criminal Courthouse (26th & California)
The Leighton Criminal Courthouse is where the Cook County Jail is located. This courthouse is often referred to as “26th & Cal” or simply, “26th.” It is the primary criminal courthouse in Chicago and Cook County. All types of criminal cases are heard at this courthouse. However, regular traffic tickets are not at this courthouse unless they are associated with a felony criminal case.
In other words, if you are simply stopped for a traffic violation and given a citation, you will not have court at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse. Even if you get arrested for a misdemeanor such as aggravated speeding, DUI, or Driving While License Suspended/Revoked, it will not be at this courthouse.
Only felony driving offenses are heard at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse. The most common ones are Felony Aggravated Driving Under the Influence, and Felony Aggravated Driving While License Revoked.
Location of the Leighton Criminal Courthouse
Since the jail is located there, the Leighton Criminal Courthouse is a very large complex that covers multiple city blocks. The entrance to the courthouse is located at the southwest corner of 26th Street and California Avenue. There is ample metered parking along the California Avenue and other streets.
It is very important to know that you cannot bring your cell phone into this courthouse. There are lockers available for rent inside the lobby, but it is probably easiest if you just leave it inside your vehicle.
Getting Around the Leighton Criminal Courthouse
Once you pass through security, you want to go to the right to enter the courthouse building. There are a number of kiosks where you can type in your name or case number to find which courtroom you are in. You can continue through the corridor to the elevators. Rooms 100, 101, and 102 are right there on the main floor. There are 8 floors of courtrooms that can be accessed by the elevators.