The beleaguered superintendent of the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center in Chicago was forced to resign yesterday after reports of continuing problems and resistance to court-ordered reforms at the facility, reports the Chicago Tribune. On the eve of her swearing in, incoming County Board President Bobbie Steele said she called Superintendent Jerry Robinson and sought his resignation. Robinson, who worked for the Chicago Police Department for 36 years, became superintendent of the juvenile facility in June 2005, but he had no corrections experience.
Steele’s swift action marked the latest upheaval at the center. County officials and lawyers with the American Civil Liberties Union have been in and out of court for seven years, bringing in experts to point out problems–such as physical abuse of residents–and urge change at the facility. Last week, the Tribune reported that a court-appointed compliance officer found unsafe and unsanitary conditions at the center, which can house up to 400 youths.