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FDLE Arrests Crime Lab Chemist Joseph Graves in Evidence-Theft Case Affecting 35 Counties

| February 5, 2014

Joseph Graves

Joseph Graves

Agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, working with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, arrested former Pensacola crime laboratory chemist Joseph Graves Tuesday evening, three days after revealing that crime evidence at an FDLE crime lab may have compromised cases in up to 35 counties statewide. Flagler County is not among those counties.

Graves faces charges of grand theft, 12 counts of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and nine counts of trafficking in illegal drugs. Investigators believe Graves, while processing drug cases, replaced prescription pain pills with over-the-counter medications. Graves was arrested at the Escambia County Jail. Bond was set at $290,000.

“The actions of Joseph Graves are disgraceful. FDLE is working with State Attorneys’ Offices statewide to ensure he is held accountable for his actions,” said FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey. “I appreciate the hard work and dedication of our FDLE members who are working swiftly and diligently responding to this situation.”

In January, in conjunction with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office and State Attorney William Eddins’ Office, FDLE began an investigation into missing prescription pain pills from the evidence room at the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office. Investigators determined that each case with missing drugs had been analyzed by Graves. Graves was relieved of duty on Jan. 31, with pay.

He became a crime lab analyst in Dec. 2005, working in the Pensacola crime laboratory, and was promoted to supervisor in July 2009.

FDLE teams are inspecting evidence from all cases handled by Graves between 2006 and present to confirm cases potentially compromised. He worked nearly 2,600 cases for 80 law enforcement agencies spanning 35 counties and 12 judicial circuits.

The Office of the State Attorney, 1st Judicial Circuit William Eddins will prosecute this case. The investigation is ongoing. Additional charges are possible.

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3 Responses for “FDLE Arrests Crime Lab Chemist Joseph Graves in Evidence-Theft Case Affecting 35 Counties”

  1. Geezer says:

    Joseph Graves is in hot water, up a creek with no paddle,
    with a steep cliff looming – getting closer and closer…
    At the base of the cliff are sharp rocks.

    AND NO PILLS TO POP! Oh no, Mr. Bill! …NO..

  2. Brian says:

    With pay , gotta love it , guy stole drugs popped and sold them , , prolly destroyed hundreds of cases against dealers, but gets to sit home and get paid while doing it , we`d be rotting in a jail cell ,while our house was being foreclosed on , politicians , cops and city and government workers don`t deserve special treatment, why are they always let go and paid for their crimes its nonsense

    • Rick says:

      Brian,
      “Graves was arrested at the Escambia County Jail. Bond was set at $290,000.” Last two sentences of the second paragraph.
      Now, this article doesn’t happen to state whether bail was made or not. So actually one wouldn’t really know at this point in time, right?
      Be that as it may, I too have a serious problem with the others that are relieved of their duties with pay, ‘efin vacation’ aka paid time off in my book. I’ve read it many a time.
      You’re correct though in reference to people like us. We would certainly be residents of the crow bar hotel.

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