Court cases compromised after Weber Co. Sheriff’s evidence room worker accused of using meth on the job

Posted at 3:05 PM, May 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-10 19:24:03-04

OGDEN, Utah -- A dozen court cases have been dismissed and more are in jeopardy after an evidence room worker at the Weber County Sheriff's Office has been fired, accused of using methamphetamine on the job.

Weber County Attorney Chris Allred told FOX 13 his office is still trying to figure out the scope of the problem, but it has led to the dismissal of charges against some defendants in Ogden's 2nd District Court.

"We've notified every defense counsel involved in any case that has any connection with the evidence in that evidence room," he said Thursday. "They're aware of that."

Candi Follum was fired earlier this year after admitting to Weber County Sheriff's deputies she had used meth booked into evidence. Documents obtained by FOX 13 under a public records request said she told her superiors she took and ingested meth from "approximately 16-20 cases."

The documents included a handwritten note from Follum, saying she was sorry.

Read the note here:

A note that the Weber County Sheriff's Office said was written by Candi Follum admitting to using meth booked into the evidence room. FOX 13 obtained it under a public records request.

Some court-appointed public defense attorneys told FOX 13 on Thursday they have received numerous letters from the county attorney's office attached to discovery in criminal cases. Some believe the problem is bigger than first thought. It could mean dozens more cases have been compromised.

Allred said so far, the majority of cases involved are ones that have been adjudicated (meaning a defendant was convicted or acquitted or pleaded guilty). The evidence allegedly used by Follum was slated to be destroyed, Allred said.

"Fortunately, the majority have involved cases already closed," he said.

The Weber County Sheriff's Office is conducting an internal investigation into its evidence handling policies. Allred said criminal charges against Follum are pending.

"As we are involved in inventorying the evidence room, we're discovering just how much evidence has been tampered with," he said. "So we're holding off on charges until we have our heads around the scope of it."