Baltimore Police Get New Training Section Director After Shooting Accident

Monday, Feb 18, 2013  |  Updated 2:10 PM EDT
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Baltimore's police commissioner has named a new director of the department's education and training section following an accidental shooting at a police training academy.

Maj. Joseph Smith's appointment was announced Monday.

He will be introduced to police recruits and training instructors Tuesday, the same day limited operations at the training academy are expected to resume after a University of Maryland campus police trainee was shot in the head during an exercise.

Smith joined the department in 1987. He has previously served as internal affairs commander, police academy commander and as a firearms training instructor. He attended the Community College of Baltimore and is married with three children.

Smith replaces Maj. Eric Russell, who was put on administrative suspension during an investigation into the training incident, which happened Feb. 12 at a firearms training center on the grounds of the former Rosewood Center in Owings Mills, a suburb of Baltimore.

City police were administering the training. Another trainee was injured by glass during the same incident.

The investigation is focusing on how the instructor came to discharge live ammunition, said Baltimore police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi.

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