Multiple allegations claim contractor asked women to remove their blouses while going through security at Lake County courthouse – CBS Chicago
WAUKEGAN, Illinois (CBS) – Women were reportedly told to remove their blouses while going through metal detectors at the Lake County Courthouse in Waukegan, in what has been called a breach of security screening protocol.
As reported by CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar, Lake County Sheriff’s Office officials have called the allegations about what is happening at checkpoints unacceptable and are reviewing surveillance footage for try to determine what happened.
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Over the years, Chicago-based Monterrey Security has secured major contracts at Soldier Field, Lincoln Park Zoo, Lollapalooza, and Wrigley Field.
The high-influence company is also currently engaged to perform security checks at the Lake County courthouse.
“We take the allegations very seriously,” said Anthony Vega, Lake County Sheriff’s Chief of Staff.
Vega said there were allegations of a breach of protocol at the security checkpoint on Tuesday morning.
“The allegations included that the employees had been asked to remove a button-down blouse,” Vega said.
There are numerous claims that employees were told to remove their clothes as they walked through security – not just their bulky outer layers. An employee who asked not to be identified said she was humiliated.
“We are working with Monterrey Security to make sure they understand the protocols, by retraining these employees,” Vega said.
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Monterrey security says their guards have been trained in existing courthouse protocols and have remained professional. A statement from the company highlights the fact that the security company is working side-by-side with members of the sheriff’s department.
It reads as follows:
“With the Stage 5 restrictions lifted this week, we have taken steps in advance to ensure that all of our officers are aware of the screening policies in government buildings in Lake County.
“Under the direct supervision and oversight of security guards and Lake County Sheriff’s Court assistants, we conducted these audits in full accordance with these established policies. We remain confident in the professionalism and high standards maintained by all staff of all teams involved in the selection process in these public spaces.
“We look forward to continuing to work with Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies and Court Security staff to provide a safe and welcoming environment for all staff and visitors.”
Vega said the allegations are potentially problematic.
“Absolutely,” he said. “Obviously, we don’t want to ask any employee or member of the public – male or female – to take their clothes off. “
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Sheriff’s Department leaders said on Wednesday that part of the Monterrey leadership will be at the courthouse to make sure everyone is on the same page and that training is consistent.