School district responding quickly to Action News investigation

CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Municipal School District is responding quickly to an exclusive Action News investigation that exposed criminals patrolling our schools.

Tom Meyer, The Investigator, uncovered at least a dozen criminals and convicted felons working as school security officers.

Just two days after the report first aired, at least one of those officers is being asked to resign.

Security officer Kevin Bell is on the Cleveland Schools payroll to make sure students and staff stay safe while they attend class. Bell told Action News he believes that convicted felons are working as school security officers.

What Bell was reluctant to say was that he has a felony drug conviction on his record.

Action News discovered that he's just one of a dozen school security officers with criminal records.

According to a labor agreement, security officers and other school employees are required to disclose felony convictions. If they don't, they could lose their job.

After seeing the report, school officials told Bell to report to the school board building for a disciplinary hearing. Bell could lose his job for not informing his superiors that he was convicted on drug charges after he was hired.

"I'm not sure who I was going to tell," Bell said. "Maybe I didn't tell, but it's public record for anyone to get."

Bell said that the administration is punishing him for publicly criticizing school security chief David Coleman. Bell accused Coleman of not doing his job.

"I believe this is retaliation," Bell said. "I was only speaking how I felt about the truth. I feel I'm being persecuted."

As the administration decides what to do about officer Bell, their actions are clear. Failure to report felony convictions won't be tolerated.

As far as Action News knows, disciplinary action is not being taken against any other security officer named in the Action News investigation. Bell, however, was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of a decision by school CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett.

It has been recommended to her by the school board attorney that Bell be fired for not disclosing his criminal conviction.