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Cuyahoga County Jail warden demoted for violating nepotism policy

Warden had supervisory authority over wife
Posted at 2:54 PM, Feb 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-11 14:54:03-05

CLEVELAND — The warden of the Cuyahoga County Jail, Eric Ivey, has been demoted effective Monday, sources confirmed. The demotion is the result of an investigation showing Ivey violated the nepotism policy when there were issues of supervisory conflict between him and his wife, Corporal Kathy Ivey.

A Cuyahoga County spokeswoman told 5 On Your Side Investigators that Ivey has been demoted to Associate Warden at the jail. The move comes after the Inspector General found Ivey violated nepotism policy.

A report obtained by News 5 last week revealed that the Agency of the Inspector General initiated an investigation regarding possible ethics violations by Warden Ivey after he was promoted to that position in 2017. Ivey had supervisory authority of his wife for about two months during 2018 and signed employee evaluations for his wife’s supervisor within his chain of command.

The AIG issued a Letter of Censure to Ivey for knowingly violating the county’s ethics code and recommended that Ivey be removed from Cpl. Ivey’s chain of command so that he is not left to supervise his wife or anyone in her supervisory chain of command.

Other issues
News 5 also learned that Ivey’s resume contained exaggerated statements. On the resume submitted in February of 2017, and obtained through an open records request, Ivey boasted that he "spearheaded the preparation and readiness for the Ohio State Jail Inspection in 2015 and 2016, first time center received full compliance." Ivey lists the accomplishment twice on the three-page resume.

But a check of state inspection records shows it isn't true. The 2015 inspection found the jail wasn't compliant for 13 standards. In 2016, inspectors cited Cuyahoga County's lock-up for violating two "important" standards. A spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction confirmed the findings.

"Lying on a resume or fudging on a resume usually is immediate discharge,” said Cuyahoga County Councilman Michael Gallagher, who chairs the council’s Public Safety Committee. “That's an administration move. If it had happened on council's watch, he wouldn't be there."

The demotion comes amid several other, apparently unrelated, issues at the jail that were surfaced late last year by a report conducted by the U.S. Marshals Service. Inmates who reside in the Cuyahoga County Jail were forced to live in unacceptable conditions in an inhumane environment where basic civil liberties were withheld, sometimes as a form of punishment by staff, according to the facility review report.

Since that report was released, News 5 has covered the county jail extensively and exposed even more issues with staff and inmates, from multiple suicides to problems with how the staff handled inmates with disabilities.

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