Archive Page - 08/16/13 41 years, 2,181 covers and 55,435 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Prince Harry Returns to the Polo Field After Making Time for a Special Visit for Princess Charlotte
- Read the Cover Story – Tess Holliday: The World's First Size 22 Supermodel!
- Who's Supporting – and Who's Slamming – Josh Duggar in the Wake of Molestation Scandal
- Stylist Works to Make Disability-Friendly Clothing More Accessible
- Sikh Man Who Removed Turban to Help Child Rewarded with an Extremely Sweet Surprise
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- May 04, 1998
- Vol. 49
- No. 17
Chicago Cop Steve Wilkos Polices Jerry Springer's Unruly Guests
Who can blame them for asking? Springer's syndicated daily talk show, a free-for-all of "teen call girls," "proud racists" and jilted lovers, has lately been running neck and neck with Oprah Winfrey in the Nielsens. And in the thick of it stands Wilkos, moonlighting as the show's chief security guard. "Steve gets more air time than I do," jokes Springer. "I just ask the questions. He breaks up the fights."
But breaking up is hard to do. Wilkos has been kicked, scratched and, last January, suffered a groin pull after separating two female guests arguing over one boyfriend. "My main concern," says his police supervisor, Sgt. William Johnston, "is that he doesn't get bit." He hasn't...yet. "Men take a few swings and wait for you to break it up," he says. "Women claw, scratch, pull hair and won't stop."
The third of four children of Stanley, a retired Chicago cop, and his wife, Jeanette, a beauty school instructor, Wilkos had his share of scrapes as a teenager. If not for his disciplinarian dad, he says, "I'd probably be in jail today." He graduated from high school in 1982 and joined the Marine Corps. At Quantico, Va., he married his first wife, Rosae, a fellow Marine, in 1985. They divorced two years later. (Wilkos recently separated from his second wife, Hannah.)
Back in civvies in 1989, Wilkos applied to the Chicago Police Department and was accepted in March 1990. The fights he later broke up on the beat proved good training for Jerry Springer, where a fellow cop working on the show in 1994 asked Wilkos to help out on an episode with Ku Klux Klan members. Wilkos was hooked. Now he tapes two shows a day before returning to his 4 p.m.-to-midnight police shift. "I work so much," he says, "I don't have time for a social life."
In response to critics, the show has added more security guards to break up the brawls. "They're getting there much faster," says an insider. From what Wilkos sees of Springer's family feuds, "It makes me realize how lucky I am," he says. "I have two good parents, two good jobs and good friends. My life's not bad at all."
Michael A. Lipton
John T. Slania in Chicago
- John T. Slania.
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!