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On March 9, an investigator with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services was fired for allegedly possessing heroin. The 40-year-old San Angelo woman had worked for the DFPS since 2012. Her termination came four days after she turned herself in for a third-degree felony charge of possession of between 1-4 grams of a controlled substance.

The woman’s drug charge stemmed from a narcotics investigation that had culminated in a raid of her home on March 3. According to reports, the San Angelo Police Department discovered a substance in the woman’s home that they believed was 4 grams of heroin. A warrant for the woman’s arrest was issued, and the woman turned herself in at the Tom Green County Jail on March 5.

The accused woman became an investigator for DFPS in 2019, and her responsibilities included inspecting homes to ensure child safety. During the investigations, the woman was supposed to look for illegal drugs in the homes. Officials from DFPS said that people applying to be investigators are not routinely drug tested. DFPS investigators in Tom Green County typically handle about 13 cases each.

A person who is charged for possession of a relatively small quantity of drugs may receive a lighter sentence than someone with a large quantity. That’s because investigators may believe that someone with a small quantity of drugs is a drug user, not a drug trafficker. With assistance from a criminal defense attorney, a defendant charged with third-degree felony drug possession may be able to have their sentence reduced by agreeing to seek treatment.