State investigates missing evidence at FHP

Evidence technician resigns amid probe


ORLANDO, Fla. – State transportation leaders have launched a criminal investigation into missing evidence at the Florida Highway Patrol.

The investigation is being conducted by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle's Office of Inspector General. It focuses on missing items from FHP's Troop K, which patrols 450 miles of the Florida Turnpike.

Investigators are saying very little about what they've found so far, but did say they're investigating "missing items from an Evidence Property Room."

One evidence technician has already resigned in the wake of the investigation.

Eric Blackmon resigned on July 14, admitting nothing to investigators in his resignation letter, saying he's "resigning for personal reasons and (he does) not wish to discuss them."

Local 6 couldn't reach Blackmon for a comment on Wednesday.

The probe comes just five months after an evidence technician with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement was arrested.

Jospeh Graves, 32, was taken into custody after an FDLE investigation showed he stole prescription pain pills from the FDLE laboratory in Pensacola. He's accused of replacing the pills with over-the-counter medication.

As a result, that agency is now reviewing 2,600 cases that were handled by FDLE.

It's not known how many cases the FHP's missing evidence may impact.

FHP leaders say the investigation into the missing items in their evidence room continues and will provide updates when they are able to.

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