Harris County precinct at center of evidence destruction investigation

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Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson came out swinging during a news conference on Friday morning . She wants to know who destroyed the evidence, why and what the long-term ramifications are.

"It's possible that it's done damage to more than a thousand cases we have pending," said Anderson. "It will make me sick if we have to dismiss a violent case because of this. It will make me sick to have to do that."

Anderson's office has already had to dismiss 142 cases because of missing evidence and more than 20,000 pieces of evidence are missing from the Harris County Precinct 4 evidence room. She also says some evidence that was initially reported missing has reappeared. She is calling for an independent audit on top of the criminal investigation.

Pct. 4 Constable Mark Herman tells FOX 26 News his office welcomes an audit. He says his staff members uncovered the missing evidence themselves and his office is cooperating with the district attorney's office. Herman also says he fired the responsible deputy constable, Christopher Hess.

"All the way back to 2007, we have found zero items that shows Chris Hess was doing his job properly," explains Herman. "He hasn't had any destruction orders or expungement orders. Nothing." Herman also says Hess had gone rogue. He says it's unlikely any of the missing drugs ended up back on the street.

Defense attorney Paul Morgan's client's case kicked off the initial investigation. He says she still has plenty of unanswered questions. "It just makes me sick how big this has gotten."

Burt Springer, Hess' attorney, says his client was following orders and is being scapegoated.