Former Florida deputy accused of planting drugs during traffic stops

Former deputy Zachary Wester is accused of planting drugs on people during traffic stops. (WJHG/WECP)

JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP/Gray News) - A former Jackson County deputy accused of planting drugs on people and arresting them has been arrested by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

FDLE began investigating last August at the request of the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. They say Wester pulled people over and planted drugs inside their vehicles. They also say Wester tampered with the body camera recordings to hide what he did.

“There is no question that Wester’s crimes were deliberate and that his actions put innocent people in jail,” FDLE Pensacola Assistant Special Agent in Charge Chris Williams said. “I am proud of the hard work and dedication shown by our agents and analysts on this case to ensure justice is served.”

Wednesday Zachary Wester, 26, of Crawfordville, was arrested on felony charges including racketeering, official misconduct, fabricating evidence, possession of a controlled substance, and false imprisonment, as well as misdemeanor perjury, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

FDLE investigators say they logged 1,400 working hours on this case.

In September, 119 cases were dropped by the State Attorney's Office due to Wester's involvement in the cases. They reviewed a total of 254 cases.

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