Baltimore top cop's implosion exposes deeply flawed vetting

Baltimore top cop's implosion exposes deeply flawed vetting
FILE - In this July 30, 2015 file photo, a man walks past a corner where a victim of a shooting was discovered in Baltimore. The beleaguered Baltimore police force has been reeling from scandal to scandal as it tries to cope with a soaring violent crime rate. The latest issue flared Tuesday, when police commissioner Darryl De Sousa, facing charges of not paying his taxes, resigned. Other controversies and struggles in recent years have included the death of Freddie Gray in police custody, a federal oversight program requiring expansive reforms and an explosive racketeering trial involving a corrupt unit of detectives. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

BALTIMORE (AP) — The resignation of Baltimore’s top cop days after U.S. prosecutors announced he hadn’t filed taxes for three years has blown open a window into City Hall’s deeply flawed vetting process.

Mayor Catherine Pugh says she “owns” the decision to appoint Darryl De Sousa as Baltimore’s police commissioner. He resigned Tuesday in embarrassment, less than four months into the high-profile job.

Pugh vows her administration is now focused on designing a rigorous review for hires. In her words at a Wednesday briefing: “We want to make sure that the next candidate for this particular position is well scrutinized.”

De Sousa’s implosion is just the latest mess due to the deficient selection process led by Pugh’s senior staff. Two other City Hall officials recently resigned following questions about their backgrounds.