Local police detective fired over handling of evidence

About 200 past and current cases could be affected, Mitchell said during a news conference Monday afternoon

February 6, 2017

Temple police Detective Jason Jordan was suspended indefinitely Monday after an internal investigation that started in September into his processing, storage, documented return and release of evidence and recovered property including DNA evidence, a handgun, narcotics, computer equipment, cellphones, jewelry, and video recordings, police said in a press release.

Jordan was an 11-year veteran of the department and spent four years as a General Investigations Unit detective, authorities said.

Temple police Chief Floyd Mitchell has consulted with Bell County District Attorney Henry Garza about the impact of Jordan's failure to maintain the chain of custody in handling the evidence on the prosecution of the cases Jordan investigated, police said.

About 200 past and current cases could be affected, Mitchell said during a news conference Monday afternoon.

Jordan was placed on paid investigatory leave on Sept. 7, 2016, the same day the internal probe was initiated.

"The internal investigation revealed that Officer Jordan failed to properly recover, document, package, and store certain items, and that he concealed a number of these items in a department gym locker, the trunk of his assigned police vehicle, and a temporary evidence locker that is designated for short-term overnight storage," police said in the press release Monday afternoon.

"In violation of departmental evidence protocols, these items were stored for periods of time between 4 months and 4 years," police said.

"The investigation also revealed that Officer Jordan falsified a government document by indicating that he had returned recovered property that was later discovered in the gym locker, to its rightful owner.
Officer Jordan had sole access to that locker, and had secured it with his own personal lock," police said.

The issues surfaced on Aug. 23, 2016 after Jordan was transferred out of the General Investigations Unit on June 16, 2016 for performance-related issues and his active cases were transferred to other detectives, police said.

The detectives to whom the cases were transferred "were unable to locate numerous evidentiary items described in Officer Jordan's case records," police said.

The items were eventually recovered during searches on Aug. 23 and Aug. 25.

On Jan. 3, Mitchell met with Jordan and Jordan's attorney and requested the officer's resignation.

On Jan. 30, Jordan declined to resign, which resulted in his indefinite suspension, police said.

Jordan may appeal the suspension.

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