BALTIMORE (WJZ) — At a puzzling press conference Friday morning, Baltimore Police Commissioner Designate Darryl De Sousa denied that Sgt. Alicia White was moved to the internal affairs division, and said that newly named Deputy Commissioner Tom Cassella will not actually be appointed in that position.
Police spokesman TJ Smith says the leak of documents about complaints against Cassella reported on by some local outlets late Thursday was “illegal,” and says the documents are still under review.
“He has a very unique skill set that I thought would be beneficial to the police department,” De Sousa said of Cassella. “I did a subsequent background check and it was at that point… that I discovered something that made me slow down that process and reconsider.”
“At this point, we’re not going to move forward,” he went on to say. “We’re actually evaluating what was brought to my attention, we’re actually evaluating the legitimacy of it.”
De Sousa also called reports that Sgt. Alicia White would be moved to internal affairs “inaccurate.”
White was one of six officers charged in May 2015 in connection with Freddie Gray’s death. Her case never made it to trial.
The Baltimore Sun reports that the information on her transfer initially came from a “departmentwide personnel order,” but Smith said Friday that order “apparently wasn’t authorized.”
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.