GOSHEN — Goshen City Board of Works accepted the resignation of Goshen Police Detective Lance Evans, 36, North Lake Street, Syracuse, Monday, Dec. 4. Evans has been on paid and then unpaid leave since being charged in March with criminal trespass and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. His resignation was retroactive to the date of his letter of resignation, Nov. 28.
Evans was found guilty on both charges in late October. He will be sentenced Dec. 13 in Elkhart County Superior Court VI. Both charges are class A misdemeanors with a sentence of up to one year each of incarceration.
Evans, a graduate of Wawasee High School, joined the Goshen Police Department as a reserve officer in 2009, being hired as a full time officer in September 2011 and was promoted to detective in 2016.
The charges stem from a Feb. 12 incident when the son of a property owner notified Indiana Conservation officers a memory card from a trail camera was stolen. However, images saved to the camera’s internal storage were found and seven images captured Feb. 4 showed two people on an all-terrain vehicle on the property that has no-trespassing signs posted around the property and at access points.
The complainant recognized the vehicle and Evans due to previous encounters of trespassing on private property.
Evans spoke with conservation officers Feb. 13 at Syracuse Police Department. At that time Evans, after being asked about trespassing on his ATV responded he had not and the conversation was finished.
A search warrant was executed Feb. 20 where officers found evidence matching what was seen on the trail camera photos. Evans did admit at that time he was driving the off-road vehicle but he was not aware the teen had stolen the memory card.
During the interview with the teen, authorities learned Evans knew the teen had taken the memory card. Officers also learned the teen and Evans reviewed the photos, then deleted the photos and threw the card away.