JAMESTOWN, N.Y. (WIVB) - A veteran Jamestown Police detective has turned in his badge. Thirty-nine-year-old Eric Corey resigned in the wake of an evidence tampering investigation.
The 14-year veteran of the force was in charge of the police department's evidence room. State Police are investigating Corey's role as evidence custodian, a position he held for two years until he transferred to another unit in April of this year.
Jamestown Police Chief Harry Snelling said, "This is an unfortunate circumstance that happened as a result of one individual and is no way a reflection of the men and women in this department."
Though he not been officially charged with a crime at this point, Corey is under investigation for alleged evidence tampering. Chautauqua County District Attorney David Foley says the allegations involve the removal of prescription painkillers from evidence bags.
"He took bags and at a minimum removed prescription pain killers for his own personal use," Foley said.
An inventory of the evidence room is now underway. Corey was in charge of everything.
Chief Snelling said, "Money, weapons, narcotics, drugs... pretty much anything we seize for evidentiary purposes. We're still doing 100 percent accountability. My priorities first were all narcotics, then it went to money, then it went to weapons, and we're still working through there."
Public defender Nathaniel Barone says this investigation could have far reaching consequences involving hundreds of cases handled by former detective Corey.
"That's our major concern at this point. When we were actually able to view the evidence that came up missing out of the evidence room at the Jamestown Police Department, it was significant. We're not talking just a few pills. We're not just talking pills. There are other things that came up missing," Barone said.
Foley added, "Very surprised that it occurred, a police officer that I knew, that I thought did a capable job. It's a little bit shocking when it's happening in police departments."
The investigation into Corey's actions continues.
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