The first shock wave of an evidence tampering scandal at a state crime lab has reached the Cape.
According to information released by the Massachusetts State Police, Annie Dookhan, who worked at the William A. Hinton Laboratory in Jamaica Plain for nine years until her resignation this past spring, is believed to have tampered with as many as 60,000 drug samples from an estimated 34,000 criminal cases by returning false positive results, recording weights in excess of actual sample sizes, and mis-calibrating machines.
The Cape and Islands District Attorney’s Office recently revealed that a drug case awaiting trial in Barnstable Superior Court could be impacted by Ms. Dookhan’s alleged tampering.
Until September 7, 41-year-old Glenn M. Medeiros Jr. of Sandwich Road, East Falmouth, had been in custody in lieu of $15,000 cash bail while awaiting trial on charges of trafficking 14 to 28 grams of cocaine, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, and committing a drug violation near a school or park.
In light of the developments at the crime lab, which is currently shut down, Mr. Medeiros’s bail order was revoked and he was released on probation. No further information was released on the status of his case.
Mr. Medeiros was arrested in April 2011 and originally arraigned in Falmouth District Court. He was indicted in August of that year and, consequently, his case was dismissed at the district court level in October.
His is one of potentially thousands of Cape Cod drug cases that could be similarly affected, and the DA’s office is in the process of sifting through those cases to see if other suspects currently in custody should be released.