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Auditor report calls for improvements to measure BPD accountability

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Posted at 5:27 PM, Aug 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-04 18:06:22-04

BALTIMORE — Response times, finances and recruitment are just a few issues auditors found Baltimore Police Department struggling with in fiscal years 2018 and 2019.

City auditors presented 5 findings from BPD that needed corrective actions.

The first, revising their goal to reduce priority one emergency call response to less than a minute.

In fiscal year of 2017 they had a target of 90 percent of all calls would be made and dispatched within 60 seconds and then the next year they reduced it to 15 percent and then 10 percent and the actuals was basically beneath the actuals because it wasn't a realistic goal," John Pasch, a Baltimore City auditor outlined.

In addition, the department was not able to provide supporting documents for the amount of money collected from event organizers to reimburse BPD for security.

They also charged a outdated flat rate for events like Orioles and Ravens games, or concerts which ultimately drained money out of their payroll budget.

"So the police response was they were going to have monthly reconciliations and follow ups to make sure the amounts are being collected," Pasch said.

Auditors also found error in BPD's measure of success regarding recruits graduating from training.

"They were saying how many of the graduates scored 85 when 85 is what's required to graduate so it's guaranteed 100 percent all of the time so the department's metric doesn't tell you anything," Pasch added.

Also, auditors flagged the department's training records saying they had security risks associated with them noting police cadets' ability to change their grades, suggesting a more secure database limiting cadets' access to grading.

Commissioner Harrison's Chief of Staff and chief financial officer say the department is working to correct auditors' findings calling up an overhaul committee to improve key performance indicators.

"We are undergoing an effort right now to be able to ensure that the performance metrics that we are providing to the council, providing for the city are achievable, manageable and we can be held to account for them," said Eric Melancon BPD's chief of staff.

BPD administrators say they intend to present a revised plan addressing the auditors findings in October.