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Whistleblower Complaint Alleges Violations at Fort Worth Crime Lab Could Result in Adverse Outcomes in Hundreds of Cases

Trisa Crutcher, an employee of a Fort Worth Police Crime Laboratory, recently filed a whistleblower complaint alleging a variety of violations at the lab that could result in negative impacts on hundreds of criminal cases, including investigations surrounding death penalty cases.

Crutcher’s 174-page report details massive lags in testing of child sexual abuse cases, various policy violations and even records falsifications.

The report was obtained by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Case background

Crutcher had previously reported the issues detailed in the report to the police department, which conducted an investigation of the lab and ultimately found no wrongdoing. However, the sergeant who oversaw the investigation, Merle Green, is on the Brady list with the local DA, meaning he has had questions of credibility and truthfulness in the past.

Crutcher also claims she was placed on administrative leave in June as a form of retaliation, with superiors telling her she “could not work in the lab while slandering the lab.”

In the report, Crutcher says the child sexual assault cases average more than a year’s worth of delays in testing, creating a massive backlog of cases. Those delays result in missed court dates and delayed delivery of justice. Crutcher writes Cassie Johnson, her supervisor, knows about the backlog, and even purposefully creates delays in testing for death penalty cases because of the amount of work involved.

There are several other issues raised in the report. For example, Crutcher discusses nonexistent units being used in cases, as well as unqualified employees participating in evidence testing.

For more information about the steps you can take if you are aware of fraudulent activity within your workplace, contact an experienced whistleblower lawyer at Kardell Law Group.

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