This recent evidence tampering is not the first experienced by the Alton Police Department. Evidence had previously been taken by evidence officer Mick Dooley who was subsequently convicted and sentenced to federal prison. One very important tenet the police are expected to comply with is preservation of evidence. Failure to maintain the integrity of evidence held connected to pending cases is of the utmost importance. Blood serum, gunshot residue tests, controlled drugs, firearms, and a host of other physical pieces of evidence are the cornerstones of many felony prosecutions. When evidence is tampered with or stolen it will oftentimes result in dismissal of very serious felony offenses. The officers who are sworn to serve all take an oath to fulfill their duties to the best of their abilities. Criminal penalties can also be imposed upon officers who fail to protect or steal the evidence they have sworn to preserve.
The State's Attorney must disclose pursuant to Brady v. Maryland to all defendants whose evidence has been tampered with. This will spur either a voluntary dismissal or motion to indepently examine evidence by defendants charged with crimes connected to the evidence.
The feds have gone after other officers successfully for tampering with evidence at Alton Police Department in the past. After a thourough investigation into the instant claims, if there is evidence that an officer(s) tampered with the evidence, there will be criminal charges against them.