- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 26, 2016

TOWSON, Md. (AP) - Three high-ranking officials of Maryland’s prison agency are out after internal investigations that began with allegations of misconduct, the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services said Wednesday.

Steven F. Geppi was removed from the state payroll as director of investigations, intelligence and fugitive apprehension on Tuesday, along with two people who worked for him, agency spokesman Gerard Shields said. The others are Debra Gonzalez Morin, former chief of the intelligence division, and John A. Spiroff, former director of the intelligence and investigative division.

Their departures were first reported by The Washington Post.

Department Secretary Stephen Moyer said in a statement that he received allegations of misconduct on Oct. 11. Shields said an investigation triggered by those allegations led to the departures of Geppi and Gonzalez Morin. Moyer did not provide details about the allegations, and Shields refused to elaborate on Moyer’s statement.

Moyer’s statement said he received a complaint on an unrelated matter later that week. Shields said that complaint led to Spiroff’s departure. Shields would not elaborate on the nature of the complaint.

“This is an active, internal investigation,” Moyer’s statement read. “Upon its conclusion, appropriate action will be taken. I will always take allegations of misconduct very seriously and will continue to demand the highest professional standards from our employees.”

Shields said the departures are not related to the federal indictment earlier this month of 80 people, including 18 state correctional officers, in what federal investigators say was a contraband smuggling conspiracy that traded drugs, tobacco and cellphones to prisoners for money and sex at Eastern Correctional Institution in Westover.

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