Tampered evidence, misplaced money surfaces in Lewiston - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Chris Hrapsky

Tampered evidence, misplaced money surfaces in Lewiston

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LEWISTON, MN (FOX 47) -- Accusations off tampered evidence at the Lewiston Police station takes a new turn Friday night.

This after the outgoing Mayor warned new City Council members that drugs, money, and documents may be missing from the evidence room.

We spoke with the Winona County Attorney, who told us there were not drugs or money missing, but rather there were extra drugs found without documentation in the evidence room.

Winona County Attorney Chuck MacLean told us he became concerned in January last year over the security of evidence in the police station, because the Lewiston Police Department was staffed so low.

MacLean attempted to have the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension investigate the Lewiston PD, but the BCA declined.

In an e-mail to the NewsCenter, the Deputy Director of the BCA said it declined to do the investigation because some BCA officers' signatures were on one or more documents in the Lewiston evidence room.

BCA will recommend a Department without conflict of interest, such as the Rochester Police Department or the Olmsted County Sheriffs Office, do the investigation.

Also, the outgoing Mayor said $50,000 was unaccounted for in the city budget.

We spoke with City Administrator Barb Hampel who said the money was a donation from local pull tab boxes that has been accumulating for 20 years to help fund the city's fire station.

She says the money was allegedly found misplaced in the city's general fund.

Hampel says, "We think it probably went into the general fund and was not properly earmarked when it came in, and this is been happening over a period of about 20 years."

That $50,000 was taken out and put into a separate account.

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