Former Haywood County Sheriff’s Deputy Kevin Smathers will be spending at least the next seven years behind bars.
Smathers was charged with several felonies in 2018, including counts of breaking and entering and one count of trafficking opium or heroin.
Smathers was fired from the Sheriff’s Office in August 2018, after Sheriff Greg Christopher requested an investigation and an outside audit of the inventory evidence room. Following the audit, Smathers was indicted on 16 counts of breaking and entering (Evidence Room) and 1 count of trafficking opium or heroin.
The breaking and entering convictions Smathers was charged with came from unauthorized access to the evidence room.
Smathers was ultimately sentenced to between 7.5-10 years in prison after pleading guilty to 17 counts of felony breaking and entering and one count of trafficking in opium or heroin. He was also ordered to pay a mandatory fine of $100,000 related to the trafficking charge.
Since then, the Haywood County Sheriff’s Office has implemented a new evidence room policy that includes independent audits. The agency has also hired a full-time evidence technician.