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Evidence Division

The Sumter County Sheriff's Office maintains evidence and property collected in connection with criminal investigations and events requiring temporary yet secure storage. The evidence or property is then preserved, packaged and stored within the Sumter County Sheriff's Office under constant video surveillance and motion detection alarms. Access to the secured evidence and property area is intentionally limited to only two individuals within the Sheriff's Office.

Evidence or property that has been dropped to the evidence vault by Sheriff's Office personnel is then placed in temporary storage or refrigeration, until it can be reviewed for identifying case numbers, descriptions, and proper seals. The items are then individually barcoded and assigned a location for quick and easy retrieval when further investigation is needed, for trial, or for return to the lawful owner.

The barcode system allows for a fully automated inventory of all items within the vault which as of 2012 is well over 9,000 items.

In addition digital evidence such as photographs and videos are stored within the secure area. The evidence department has the responsibility to upload photographs from individual department issued cameras to a secured photo storage software program.

Evidence and property is constantly monitored and reviewed to determine when the evidence can be removed from the custody of the Sheriff's Office. Evidence from cases already adjudicated that can be destroyed and has been authorized by a judge to be destroyed is then incinerated. Other items are returned to the lawful owners and abandoned items of useful value are then donated to the community.