MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A Miami Beach crime scene technician has been relieved of duty with pay after being accused of failing to properly handle evidence in nine cases, authorities announced Monday.
Miami Beach police spokesman Ernesto Rodriguez said Jason Bruder, a 13-year veteran of the Police Department, was relieved of duty on July 15.
According to Rodriguez, some items were stored in a temporary storage locker that were exclusively controlled by Bruder rather than being properly checked into the Police Department's evidence storage facility.
Rodriguez said there is no indication at this time that any evidence is missing or that money or narcotics were involved.
The Internal Affairs Unit is investigating the matter, including reviewing all cases and evidence Bruder has handled for the past several years, Rodriguez said.
Internal Affairs is also working with the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office to determine whether criminal charges will be filed.
"We take our responsibility to handle evidence very seriously," Miami Beach police Chief Daniel Oates said in a statement. "We discovered this problem and are immediately addressing it. We will pursue criminal charges if they are appropriate. We are also reviewing our evidence procedures to determine whether changes are needed."