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Former deputy comptroller shreds documents amid federal investigation

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Posted at 3:53 PM, Aug 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-13 15:55:10-04

BALTIMORE — Baltimore’s former deputy comptroller, Harriette Taylor, spent hours at City Hall last Thursday shredding documents in the Comptroller's Office. The Office is currently under investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Acting City Solicitor Dana Moore confirmed to WMAR-2 News Mallory Sofastaii that Taylor was in City Hall on Thursday afternoon (Aug. 6) until 9:00 p.m., and again on Friday.

Moore said she was notified about the situation last Friday morning from someone within City Hall.

Moore stated Taylor was in the building for roughly 12 hours, but she isn't sure how long Taylor was actually shredding documents.

According to Moore, she's trying to figure out how Taylor, who retired in April, gained access into City Hall and to the Comptroller's Office.

City employees are allowed to shred documents that are duplicates or triplicates, but not documents that need to be preserved, according to Moore.

Moore said it's concerning that Taylor, a former employee, was given free reign while the Comptroller’s Office is subject to a federal investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Moore has asked Baltimore Inspector General Isabel Mercedes Cumming to not only look into what happened but why it happened.

“Obviously there’s a concern about access to government offices after hours by people who are not supervised,” said Moore.

Moore has requested all credentials provided to people who no longer work in the Comptroller's Office be retrieved and she's looking to restrict access to that very important office by people who are not affiliated with the office.

Moore also asked that whatever had been shredded be collected, bagged, and preserved. What documents were shredded by Taylor is unclear at this time.

The matter is currently under investigation, and Comptroller Pratt has no comment pending completion of the investigation, a spokesperson told WMAR-2 News on Thursday.