Goddard stonewalling Sheriff Arpaio’s investigation of him for bribery and corruption ignored by media

This article below came out in the Yellow Sheet yesterday discussing how Sheriff Arpaio has released a press release twice that the mainstream media has failed to pick up, frustrated that AG Terry Goddard is thwarting his investigation of bribery in the Petersen payment while Goddard was investigating Petersen as Treasurer. Goddard is refusing to allow investigators to interview anyone at the AG’s office without his attorney present, even though this contradicts Goddard’s own position in the past on this matter, which he has written about in the Arizona bar magazine. When Goddard is investigating defendants, a separate set of rules applies and they don’t get to hide behind their attorneys like everyone at the AG’s office gets to do through Goddard. By having his attorney present every time an AG employee is interviewed, Goddard can control the investigation.

Arpaio released the press release a second time because not a single news source carried it the first time. This is reprehensible. How long is the mainstream media going to continue to circle the wagons for their guy? Maybe at some point they’ll pretend like they’re doing their job and cover these stories. How many shakedowns of Republican politicians by Terry the Terrible have to take place before the mainstream media begrudgingly starts covering them? Federal attorney general Alberto Gonzales is in the newspapers practically every day regarding the investigation into why he fired 9 U.S. Attorneys (even though he was perfectly within his legal right to do so). Why does Goddard get a free pass in the mainstream media regarding his attempts to impede an investigation of a million dollar allegation of bribery? Because he’s a partisan liberal Democrat who carries out their agenda, however corruptly.

YELLOW SHEET REPORT
Arpaio sends second release about Goddard ‘stonewalling’

ARTICLE POSTED 8.22.2007 | 2:44 PM

“First of all, that’s a week old,” said AG spokeswoman Andrea Esquer, when questioned today about Arpaio’s claim that Goddard’s attorney Ed Novak has been “stonewalling” the investigation into the Petersen payment to Goddard in June 2006.

Arpaio provided the sequel to the press release this morning and expressed exasperation no papers picked up the story the first time around (and rebutted a Republic polling article that crowns Napolitano as the most popular Arizona politician). Arpaio says Novak’s demands that he receive advanced notice of the questioning of any current and former AG employees that could be contacted in the investigation is hampering his inquiry. Esquer said the accusation came as news to the AG because the office has been “fully cooperating,” and there is nothing unusual about having a lawyer present during questioning.

County Attorney Thomas’ spokesman Barnett Lotstein said it is not about right to counsel and added Novak is counsel to Goddard, not his employees. “You can have your lawyer present when you’re being talked to, but you can’t have your lawyer present when some witness that your lawyer doesn’t represent is being talked to,” said Lotstein, who believes the Novak policy is likely to keep AG employees’ mouths shut about the Goddard/Petersen affair. A court battle over the issue is not wanted, but could be necessary, he said.

Jim Belanger, president-elect of the Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice, said the “government often tries to take the position that one lawyer can’t represent the entity and the individuals, but it’s really a conflict determination that the lawyer and the client have to go through.” Employers and employees involved in a criminal investigation could very well have differing interests, but there is “certainly nothing inappropriate” about the AG’s counsel informing employees that they can be represented during if they want to during questioning, Belanger said. Novak and Maricopa County Attorney Special Crimes Bureau Chief Vicki Kratovil have been exchanging letters on the debate.


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