FDLE Crime Lab Chemist Faces Additional Charges
By The News Service of Florida // May 7, 2014
rearrested on 41 additional charges
TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA – The Florida Department of Law Enforcement on Wednesday rearrested a former crime-lab chemist, Joseph Graves, on 41 additional charges of drug trafficking, the agency said in a news release.
Investigators believe that Graves, while processing drug cases for FDLE’s Pensacola lab, stole prescription pain pills intended as evidence. Graves was arrested in Panama City and booked into the Bay County Jail, with bond set at $1.025 million.
He was originally arrested Feb. 4on charges of grand theft, 12 counts of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and nine counts of trafficking in illegal drugs.
FDLE began the investigation in January, collaborating with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office and State Attorney William Eddins, after prescription pain pills from the evidence room at the sheriff’s office went missing.
Investigators determined that each case involving missing drugs had been analyzed by Graves, who had been a crime lab analyst in Pensacola since 2005 and was promoted to supervisor in 2009. FDLE has been reviewing evidence from all the cases Graves handled to determine which ones could be compromised.
He handled nearly 2,600 cases for 80 law-enforcement agencies spanning 35 counties and 12 judicial circuits.