SAUK VILLAGE | The Village Board agreed Tuesday to settlements of lawsuits brought by two former employees, including former police chief Robert Fox.
Fox will be paid $14,000 as part of his settlement, in addition to $6,104 as a refund for his pension.
Fox filed a total of seven cases with the Illinois Department of Human Rights, the Department of Labor, Cook County circuit court and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Fox was Sauk Village police chief for a tumultuous year, once appointed by former village President Lewis Towers to head the police and fire departments under a fury of protest. Former officials, including current village President David Hanks and Trustee Derrick Burgess, locked Fox out of the police station in one incident.
The board tried firing Fox, but his appointment was upheld by Cook County Judge Kathleen Pantle. Fox ultimately agreed to decline the post running both the police and fire departments in October 2012 and trustees eventually eliminated the position of police chief. The village was without one for 11 months. Fire Chief Al Stoffregen ran both departments during the vacancy.
Sandra Cosey filed a civil rights case in federal and state courts against Sauk Village and Towers and former Trustee Enoch Benson alleging racial discrimination. She is a former Parks and Recreation department employee. Her settlement was for $83,000. The village did not release more information regarding Cosey's case.
The village denied all liability to all cases as part of the settlements.
"Had the village continued with defending these matters the legal fees would have well exceeded the settlement amount, which makes no economic sense and would only hurt the villages’ taxpayers," village Clerk Debbie Williams said.