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Sauk Village Police Chief Back On The Job After Lockout

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A police gun and handcuffs.  [Generic] (credit: Steve Hardy/CBS Local)

A police gun and handcuffs. [Generic] (credit: Steve Hardy/CBS Local)

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SAUK VILLAGE, Ill. (CBS) — The Sauk Village police chief is back on the job, after he was literally locked out of his own office.

On Monday, two Sauk Village trustees showed up at the police station and told Chief Robert Fox he was no longer in charge and had to go.

A heated exchange followed, the SouthtownStar reports. The trustees – Derrick Burgess and David Hanks – ordered Fox to leave. Fox said only the mayor had the authority to issue such an order.

Burgess pressed the matter, saying, “You’re not God.”

The trustees asked police officers to remove Fox, but they did not respond.

Fox, according to the paper, went to lunch. When he returned, the locks had been changed.

It is all the result of a power struggle between Mayor Lewis Towers and the village board. Towers appointed Fox without board approval, and the board responded by passing a law placing a limit on the mayor’s appointment powers.

The board never approved a salary or contract for Fox, either, and after a $4,600 check was issued to Fox last month at the mayor’s request, the board put Treasurer Genorise Carmichael and village manager Henrietta Turner on paid administrative leave for a week for paying him.

On Tuesday afternoon, Fox returned to the job after a Cook County judge sided with Mayor Towers in a lawsuit about appointment powers.

Fox has been working without a contract or salary for two months, but now, he expects to be paid fairly soon.

The SouthtownStar contributed to this report, via the Sun-Times Media Wire.

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