(Jackson County Sheriff's Office, Florida)

Cop arrested for allegedly planting meth, other drugs on random drivers

A Florida police officer was arrested and charged for allegedly planting drugs on random drivers

July 11, 2019 - 6:40 pm

(KMOX) - A Florida police officer faces 30 years in prison for allegedly planting drugs like meth and marijuana on drivers during traffic stops.  Deputy Zachary Wester is being charged with 52 counts racketeering, false imprisonment, possession, fabricating evidence and more.

While 119 people have had charges involving the officer dropped and eight inmates have been released, 263 other cases still remain under review.  One man even lost custody of his daughter over the "drug planting."  

"There is no question that Wester’s crimes were deliberate and that his actions put innocent people in jail," Chris Williams, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s assistant special agent in charge, said in a news release.

Some plan to sue the sheriff's office.  One mother told the Washington Post Wester made her fear she was going to lose her children over a "drug bust" even though she never touched drugs.

Wester joined the Jackson County, Florida Sherriff's Office in 2016 and something didn't seem right about his inconsistencies in his reports.  It was also suspicious that his body camera was usually turned off right until Wester would "find the drugs."  No one is sure why Wester planted drugs on innocent people or how he picked to "bust."

He was fired last September and arrested Wednesday. 

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