Newly minted Boston police commissioner placed on leave for ‘disturbing issues,’ mayor says

Just a few days into his new role, Boston Police Commissioner Dennis White has been placed on administrative leave by Mayor Marty Walsh, who cited “disturbing issues” in his decision. White assumed command of the Boston Police Department when he was sworn in on Monday.

Former Commissioner William Gross retired Friday after serving the department for 37 years, including the last two and a half year’s as commissioner, Law Officer reported last week.

Walsh said White was asked to quickly step into the role of commissioner last Friday in an attempt to create a smooth transition within the Boston Police Department, according to reports.

“These disturbing issues were not known to me or my staff, but should have been at the forefront,” reads Walsh’s statement. “Upon learning of these serious allegations, I immediately acted.”

The Boston Globe reported that White is facing an allegation of domestic violence that dates back to 1999.

According to the Globe, White was accused of pushing and threatening to shoot his then-wife, and was later ordered to stay away from his family.

A judge issued a restraining order on May 5, 1999, that forced White to vacate his home, stay away from his wife and children, and surrender his service weapon. The Globe could not find evidence that White was charged with a crime. At the time, he denied the allegations in court filings.

Walsh said Superintendent-in-Chief Gregory Long will serve as acting BPD commissioner while White is on leave, WCVB reported.

According to Walsh, the city’s legal team is seeking outside legal counsel in order to conduct and full and impartial investigation.

White is a 32-year veteran of the Boston Police Department. Prior to being promoted to Chief of Staff to Commissioner Gross and to the rank of Superintendent, White was a Deputy Superintendent in the Office of the Superintendent-in-Chief and in the Bureau of Field Services Night Command.

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