a news briefing, Police Commissioner Darryl DeSousa stressed that
"everything is going to be reviewed" by the seven-member independent
review board, including whether they believe evidence points to a
homicide, a suicide, an accidental injury or even "something internally
within the department."
"They're going to look at everything. They're not going to keep
anything unturned," said DeSousa, a Baltimore police veteran who took
over leadership of the city's force earlier this year.
unsolved case remains a homicide investigation led by Baltimore
detectives. Investigators have said detective Sean Suiter was attacked
in November 2017 while investigating a 2016 triple homicide with his
partner in a high-crime neighborhood in West Baltimore. The medical
examiner's office ruled the death a homicide.
But in the roughly
five months since Suiter was shot in the head with his own gun the day
before he was to testify for a grand jury investigating police
corruption, his death remains a puzzling whodunit and conspiracy
theories have flourished. There has been a $215,000 reward for months,
but nobody has been charged.
Authorities have repeatedly said
there's no evidence to suggest Suiter's scheduled testimony in the
federal investigation led to his death. And in late December, the FBI
declined to accept Davis' request for federal agents to lead the Suiter
investigation, sending a letter to police saying they believed it would
be "prudent" for city police to continue leading the inquiry.
disclosed last month that an independent panel would examine Suiter's
death in hopes outsiders can shed light on what police have described as
a random attack by an unidentified suspect. He told The Associated
Press they needed a "fresh set of eyes on it."
Commissioner Kevin Davis, who was fired by the mayor in January, told
reporters last year that Suiter approached a "suspicious" man in a
vacant lot between row houses, leading to a violent confrontation in
which he was shot with his own gun. His partner can be seen on private
surveillance video taking cover across the street, Davis had said.
responding to a reporter's question on Thursday, DeSousa said he did
not know the origin of the few vague details about the lone attacker —
identified as an African-American man in a black jacket with a white
"I don't know where exactly it came from," DeSousa said.
On Thursday, DeSousa said he's had lunch several times with Suiter's grieving wife, who has stayed quiet since his death.
independent review board will be paid for with roughly $150,000 from
the police budget. It is being led by James "Chips" Stewart and James
"Chip" Coldren, both members of CNA, a nonprofit research firm based in
Arlington, Virginia. The seven-member panel includes two retired
Baltimore homicide detectives.
"This is a complicated case and
we're going to take a thorough look," said Stewart, estimating their
work and various recommendations would take roughly six months to