Michelle Obama's cousin given charge of Chicago Public Schools security

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Chicago, May 2 (ANI): Michelle Obama's cousin has been given charge of Chicago Public School's security.

Michael Shields, who is a 21-year Chicago Police veteran, was a deputy chief when new Police Superintendent Jody Weis promoted him in early 2008 only to demote him months later, the Chicago Sun Times reports.

The Bureau of Safety Director Durbak resigned after finishing his eight-year tenure.

School CEO Ron Huberman said Shields, brings critical law enforcement skills needed as he embarks on new anti-violence efforts.

The police and CPS officials currently are worried about the record number of students who have died violently this school year -- 38, with 11/2 month to go before summer break.

"Shields has a solid understanding of law enforcement, school communities and neighborhoods. He brings expertise and experience from three areas of law enforcement that intersect with our new school violence initiatives.," Huberman said Thursday.

Shields was a deputy chief in the Detective Division from 2002 to early 2008, when he was promoted by the newly sworn-in Weis to deputy superintendent of the Bureau of Strategic Deployment.

Weis, who claimed Shield's 2008 appointment as deputy superintendent was based on resumes, interviews and gut feelings, demoted him to a lieutenant at the Belmont Area headquarters, earning far lower pay.

"I've worked with him. This is an upright gentleman. What differences he and Jody Weis had, I just don't know" Ald. Carrie Austin (34th) said.

"Maybe you saw someone who was more knowledgeable than yourself, and you didn't like that. Maybe you felt threatened. That could have been the case. But Weis lost an asset in Michael Shields, and we are the better off for it at CPS," Austin added. (ANI)

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