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I-Team: Evidence missing from Woonsocket PD

NBC 10 WJAR, Turn to,
BYLINE: Jim Taricani

Woonsocket, RI

2012-01-26_Evidence missing from Woonsocket PD_01

Evidence in a criminal case involving the Woonsocket Police Department is missing, the NBC 10 I-Team reported Thursday.

The I-Team found out that two years ago, a stolen gold necklace and a bracelet were found in a Woonsocket pawn shop.

The Woonsocket police put the necklace and the bracelet in their evidence locker.

But in December, when the attorney general needed the evidence to prosecute the case, Woonsocket police couldn't find the gold necklace, reportedly worth $22,000.

A source with knowledge of the case told the I-Team that it's the second time the Woonsocket police department lost evidence in a criminal case within several months.

This time, the source said, several officers put on the gold necklace and, making "gangsta" signs, had their pictures taken with it.

The pawn shop, according to the source, paid $11,000 for the necklace and the bracelet, not knowing the items were stolen.

When the owner of the necklace and the bracelet tried to get them from the police department, the owner got only the bracelet.

Police had no explanation for the missing $22,000 gold necklace.

The Woonsocket Police Department released a statement to the I-Team:

"A criminal case concluded in the courts. There was property from that case to be returned to its owner. Initially it was not located. But, an internal audit of the property evidence room is underway to locate it," Lt. Eugene Jalette said.

The attorney general's office would not confirm nor deny it is investigating.

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