Gary Tuggle hired as Baltimore Acting Police Commissioner

May 15, 2018: Baltimore City Police Commissioner Darryl De Sousa was suspended with pay by Mayor Catherine Pugh on Friday, May 11, 2018, pending the resolution of three federal criminal tax charges filed against him. “Upon review of the circumstances surrounding Commissoner De Sousa's failure to file tax returns for successive years, I have placed him on paid suspension effective immediately,” Pugh said. Deputy Commissioner Gary Tuggle, a former senior U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration official hired by De Sousa in March, 2018, to oversee strategic and support services, has been appointed as the Acting Commissioner in De Sousa’s absence, Pugh said. De Sousa, 53, and his lawyers criticized U.S. prosecutors after De Sousa on Thursday, May 10, 2018, had taken a contrite posture toward the charges, which are misdemeanors. Attorney Steven Silverman said De Sousa did not learn about the charges until after they were filed and that federal authorities did not give him a chance to explain or file the missing returns--an opportunity that Silverman said taxpayers are usually provided. “Criminal charges are usually a last resort by the government after the tax payer has ignored the government’s warning,” Silverman said in a statement. “Had the government made an inquiry prior to charging, the government would have learned that Commissioner De Sousa was in the process of seeking assistance from a professional tax consultant to file all past due returns.” Federal Prosecutors say they have charged De Sousa with three misdemeanor counts of failing to file federal taxes. The police officers’ union and some state legislators on May 10 had called on De Sousa to be suspended, even as Pugh was saying that De Sousa retained her confidence. On Friday, May 11, she praised De Sousa’s short tenure leading the police department, saying he has been an effective leader who has driven down crime. “That said, I believe his suspension pending resolution of this matter is in the best interests of the Baltimore Police Department, the city of Baltimore and him personally,” Pugh said. Pugh hired De Sousa, a thirty-year vetern of the Baltimore Police Department, as the Police Commissioner in January, 2018, after she fired his predecessor, Kevin Davis.

Attribution: The Baltimore Sun

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