DA Charges Former SF Forensic Laboratory Employee with Meth Theft

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By Alana Bleimann

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin said Thursday his office has filed charges against former San Francisco County Forensic Laboratory Division employee, Justin Volk, who allegedly stole evidence from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), including a bag of methamphetamine that was previously collected during a death investigation.

As the defendant surrendered this morning, the District Attorney’s office said two misdemeanors were filed – theft and receipt of stolen property.

Boudin’s office said it “has been committed to individually reviewing every case that Mr. Volk was involved in to ensure that no conviction or punishment has been improperly tainted.”

Both crimes involved evidence belonging to the OCME, where the defendant was previously employed to test and store items collected as evidence for investigations in the Forensic Laboratory Division.

The theft occurred between June and late August of last year, but came to public knowledge in late August of last year when the defendant – in a much publicized story – was stopped in his vehicle in Utah.

“Narcotics in evidence bags marked and labeled by OCME” were found after a subsequent routine search of the vehicle was conducted, the DA office noted.

At this time, the defendant was arrested outside his vehicle in Utah.

The bags contained methamphetamine later found to be collected during a death investigation by the OCME and stored in its evidence room by the District Attorney’s office.

It was suspected that the defendant was able to obtain these evidence bags during his work, that included “unrestricted access” to the OCME evidence room.

“When we first learned of Mr. Volk’s misconduct, my office worked quickly to review all convictions in cases in which he was involved,” Boudin said.

“In addition to ensuring conviction integrity, we are now seeking to hold Mr. Volk accountable for violating the trust the public places in those who handle evidence related to criminal cases,” Boudin added.

Alana Bleimann is a junior at the University of San Francisco majoring in Sociology with a minor in Criminal Justice Studies. She is from Raleigh, North Carolina.


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About The Author

The Vanguard Court Watch operates in Yolo, Sacramento and Sacramento Counties with a mission to monitor and report on court cases. Anyone interested in interning at the Courthouse or volunteering to monitor cases should contact the Vanguard at info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org - please email info(at)davisvanguard(dot)org if you find inaccuracies in this report.

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