Gray ordered strict checks of appointees

Mayor Vince Gray Wednesday ordered thorough background checks and personnel reviews of all service appointees in his administration.

Comment

"While a vetting process was implemented, it is clear that the approach was not thorough enough to address all relevant issues and questions for Excepted Service appointments," said Gray in a statement. "Moving forward, I want to make sure that we check and double-check all current and future Excepted Service appointees by also engaging our own Metropolitan Police Department."

Gray acknowledged that in moving quickly to fill posts below the top level, there wasn’t “the same degree of rigor” in performing background checks with cabinet posts, according to the statement.

In some cases, staff assumed someone was cleared because they worked in a previous administration or currently worked in government.

The announcement comes just a week after Sulaimon Brown, appointed as a special assistant in the D.C. Department of Health Care Finance, was let go.

In 2007, he was the subject of a restraining order, but it was never served by police and Brown was unable to contest it, according to City Paper.

In the order, the mother of a 13-year-old girl accused Brown of pretending to be a police officer and using that cover to stalk her daughter. Brown allegedly gave the girl $100 bills and other gifts and regularly visited the girl at home and at friends' houses.

Brown denied any wrongdoing.

The more extensive background checks will include current appointees in the Excepted Service and future candidates.

Gray will order District police to conduct the background checks.

No comments