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Former Van Zandt County deputy charged with tampering with evidence

WorldNow and KYTX, 19HD KYTX,
Story courtesy of the Tyler Morning Telegraph
By KENNETH DEAN, Staff Writer
Link to Article

Van Zandt County, TX

2011-06-30_INT_Former Van Zandt County deputy charged_01

Missing evidence inside a locker at the Van Zandt County Sheriff's Office has resulted in an ongoing investigation and the arrest of a former deputy.

Van Zandt County District Attorney Chris Martin said the investigation into Donna Still was initiated when his First Assistant District Attorney Richard Schmidt was having a conversation with an individual and learned of possible missing evidence.

"We're still investigating, but we found multiple pieces of evidence in a home she used to live in that she would have had access to in her position as the evidence clerk with the sheriff's office," he said. "The evidence had been in her possession."

Martin said the former deputy Still was arrested Wednesday for tampering with physical evidence and bond was set at $25,000.

Still made bond Wednesday night and has been released, but officials said as the investigation unfolds there could be additional charges against Still.

Martin said at this time his office does not have any information that anyone else was involved, but they are looking at all possibilities.

He said Still joined the sheriff's office in 2006 as a patrol deputy and worked as the evidence clerk from 2007 to 2008 before she left the department.

Martin said he did not know if any cases would be affected by the discovery.

"We have yet to determine if it is going to have any bearing on any cases, but it sure will call some into question," he said.

Martin said officers are called to uphold the law, and those committing crimes have to held accountable.

"It's about holding not only law enforcement, but any individual responsible for crimes they may have committed," he said.

Tyler Paper is continuing to follow this story and will have additional details as they become available.

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