Former Celina officer being investigated by Texas Rangers

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by JOBIN PANICKER

Bio | Email | Follow: @jobinpnews

WFAA

Posted on July 24, 2013 at 10:15 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 24 at 10:36 PM

CELINA — News 8 has learned that former Celina police Officer Paul Jones is being investigated by the Texas Rangers. Jones was the department's Officer of the Year in 2010.

He had been interim chief, but then was demoted to patrol duty.

The Celina Police Department fired Officer Jones in early July for allegedly mishandling items from an evidence locker.

"We know for a fact that the evidence room was not properly maintained, and there were serious violations of operating procedure," said city attorney Lance Vanzant.

An internal investigation also looked into whether Jones was responsible for $526 missing from the locker. Jones was given two polygraph tests, during which he denied taking the cash.

The first test found his answers “inconclusive,” but the second determined he was "untruthful."

"We have absolutely no knowledge that Officer Jones stole the money. I don't know that, and would not claim that," Vanzant said.

Jones was also accused of misusing a police vehicle, but Vanzant could not elaborate on that allegation because Jones and his attorney are seeking an appeal to the firing.

Calls to Jones' attorney were not returned.

The Collin County District Attorney's office has also confirmed a case involving Jones has been filed with its office, but a representative there could not elaborate any further.

E-mail jpanicker@wfaa.com

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