The Baltimore Police Department hired a former Drug Enforcement Administration official and presidential appointee to head internal investigations, a move that the signals the agency’s desire to get tougher on police misconduct, the Baltimore Sun reports. Grayling Williams started this week. He spent 22 years with DEA, and was appointed by President Obama to serve as the Director of the Office of Counternarcotics Enforcement at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Maj. Nathan Warfield was removed from the internal affairs unit last summer over concerns about his social relationship with an officer who had been under investigation for years and was federally indicted on drug distribution charges. Warfield, who Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld had handpicked for the job, was not charged and is now a patrol commander. The police department rarely hires from the outside for top positions, but the new Internal Investigations Division chief is the second in two months to come from outside, following the hiring of former top Montgomery County commander John A. King to take over training and education. Former Mayor Sheila Dixon called internal discipline a “weak link” in 2009, amid the firing of the trial board prosecutor and the dismissal of more than 50 internal misconduct cases for reasons that were never confirmed.