Embattled Correction Commissioner Joe Ponte Resigning

NEW YORK - The city's embattled correction commissioner, Joseph Ponte, is leaving his post.

Ponte will leave the department sometime next month. He has been under fire for several weeks for misusing his city vehicle for personal purposes. 

City investigators found he took his city car out of town for 90 days last year, much of that in Maine.

A separate scandal rocked the department earlier this week.

The city's Department of Investigation accused correction officials of spying on its probe of the agency, including monitoring phone calls it had with confidential informants on Rikers Island.

Both scandals prompted calls for Ponte to resign.

On Wednesday, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito said he should step down.

Ponte joined the de Blasio administration in March, 2014 with a reputation as a reformer.

Shortly thereafter, the department was accused by the U.S. Attorney of harboring a culture of violence.

Ponte tried to shed that characterization.

He eliminated solitary confinement for young adults.

But an uptick in slashings and stabbings dogged the department.

Earlier this week, Ponte told NY1 he wasn't sure if he'd be staying on for a second term if Mayor de Blasio is re-elected.

It is unclear when he'll be leaving his post and who will be his replacement.

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