DOC official quits after harassment investigations

June 9, 2013 (CHICAGO)

Ty J. Bates, who had been a deputy director since 2011, resigned Friday, according to Illinois Department of Corrections spokesman Tom Shaer.

Shaer said Bates was at the center of two recent investigations. He declined to release details, saying internal personnel matters aren't discussed publicly.

The results of the investigations showed that Bates violated corrections sexual harassment policies related to communications, but it wasn't enough to pursue legal charges. Bates resigned after his disciplinary action, which included suspension and employee training, was announced.

"Upon completion of both investigations, it was determined that Deputy Director Bates' communications had violated IDOC policies and, while not rising to the level of legal sexual harassment, they did meet the Department's definition of such harassment," Shaer wrote in an email.

Bates became a deputy director in December 2011, according to the IDOC's website. He first joined the department as a correctional officer in 2003 at Centralia Correctional Center and was named assistant warden four years later. In 2009, he became an assistant warden at Big Muddy River Correctional Center and was appointed warden in 2011.

A message that the AP left Sunday at a phone number listed for Bates wasn't immediately returned.

The department announced Friday that Shannis Stock would take over as acting deputy director of the southern region. Stock has been with the department since 2001 and was most recently warden at Southwestern Illinois Correctional Center.

"We have zero tolerance for any violation of our policies and are committed to strict enforcement of them," said Department of Corrections Director S.A. "Tony" Godinez in an email statement. "No one is exempt, whether they are in management or not. ... We have taken appropriate action here, as we should."

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