Otero County appraiser found not guilty of records tampering

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ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) – A former Otero County appraiser in New Mexico has been acquitted of charges that he deleted digital property records.

The Alamogordo Daily News reports reports that a county jury found 35-year-old Joshua Prather not guilty on 62 counts of tampering with public records.

The decision comes almost two years after Prather turned himself in on the charges. In a two-day trial, the state said Prather had deleted the records from a county database in February 2013 after falling behind on his work in the Otero County Assessor’s Office.

Prather’s attorney Ted Holmes says the apparent deletion of the records could have occurred during a computer error and called an employee for the Assessor’s Office to testify about such an event.

He says he has always believed Prather to be innocent.

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