By Monica Alonzo
By Stephen Lemons
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Dulce Paloma Baltazar Pedraza
By Ray Stern
By Pete Kotz
By Monica Alonzo
By New Times
On or about July 1996, Sergeant Mark Battilana's home was broken into. On that same evening, the Glendale Police Department had stopped a car which apparently had a gun in it that had been stolen from Shooter's World. Sheriff Arpaio asked me if the gun that was found in this vehicle which was stolen from Shooter's World could somehow be connected to Mark Battilana. The Sheriff seemed very insistent that there be some way to connect this stolen gun to Mark Battilana in a further effort to get Mark Battilana out of the Sheriff's Office. Sheriff Arpaio and Director Hendershott continued to emphasize that they wanted to make a connection of this stolen gun to Mark Battilana. However, there was no connection.
I was present at several meetings with Sheriff Arpaio, Dave Hendershott and attorney Ronald Lebowitz in which the topic of Tom Bearup's testimony at the appeal hearing of Mark Battilana was discussed. Although the appeal hearing involved the termination of Mark Battilana, Sheriff Arpaio and Director Hendershott wanted damaging information about Tom Bearup to come out at the hearing so that this information could be used against Tom Bearup if Tom Bearup ran against Sheriff Arpaio for Sheriff.
After Tom Bearup testified at the appeal hearing of Mark Battilana, Director Hendershott and Sheriff Arpaio wanted the transcript of Tom Bearup's testimony. Attorney Ronald Lebowitz told Director Hendershott and Sheriff Arpaio that he did not have a legitimate purpose to request this transcript. However, Director Hendershott and Sheriff Arpaio insisted that they get the transcript on an expedited basis. The cost of the transcripts was over $500. Director Hendershott and Sheriff Arpaio ordered that this transcript be obtained at County expense even though the purpose of the transcript was only for political purposes on a re-election of the Sheriff against Tom Bearup.
In June or July of 1996, I was invited to a meeting on East Van Buren between Seventh Street and 16th Street in an old house that the Sheriff's Office rented out to have a meeting. This meeting was done away from the Department because there was a feeling that information was being leaked and the Sheriff's Office wanted the meeting away from the Sheriff's Office for that reason. Director Hendershott instructed me, prior to this meeting, that the meeting was going to be to discuss transfers of people who were viewed as "dime droppers" against the Sheriff and where those people would be transferred to. . . .
Director Hendershott told me that I was to be at the meeting because they needed to know which individuals were not cooperating in giving damaging information against Mark Battilana and who the dime droppers were so they would know who to transfer. Sheriff Arpaio stated that we must put the dime dropper where they could not cause damage.
Also during the Mark Battilana investigation, Director Hendershott did not believe that Deputy Dave Head and Deputy Chris Pasciuti were being cooperative against Mark Battilana. Therefore, Director Hendershott ordered me to call Dave Head and Chris Pasciuti's District Commander, Pat Cooper, and tell Commander Cooper to tell Dave Head and Chris Pasciuti that the time is now to come clean. This was an effort to intimidate Dave Head and Chris Pasciuti into cooperating against Mark Battilana.
Director Hendershott did not believe that Paul Mason, a former posseman, was being cooperative against Mark Battilana. Therefore, Director Hendershott ordered me to go to Chief Wendt and have him put Paul Mason on an undesirable shift in an effort to force Paul Mason out of the Sheriff's Office. He stated that Paul Mason was an old man who probably couldn't take the midnight shift.
Director Hendershott also did not believe that Deputy Todd Waite was cooperating against Mark Battilana. Therefore, Director Hendershott ordered me to re-interview Todd Waite during the Internal Affairs interview of Mark Battilana and threaten Todd Waite with a polygraph in an effort to intimidate him into cooperating against Mark Battilana.
I believe that the original appeal hearing of Mark Battilana was set for July of 1997. Prior to the appeal hearing, I had a meeting with Director Hendershott to discuss the hearing. Director Hendershott told me that I was to make sure that no one found out that Deputy Gary McGuire was ordered to do undercover work against Mark Battilana.
I believe that Director Hendershott orchestrated a campaign to justify terminating Mark Battilana from the Sheriff's Office. Although I knew that the procedures used in the investigation were highly improper, I also knew that if I did not cooperate that I would be retaliated against. I knew that Director Hendershott altered the statements of witnesses in an effort to get Mark Battilana out of the Sheriff's Office. I know that Director Hendershott offered benefits to witnesses who would cooperate against Mark Battilana. I was ordered by Director Hendershott that any witnesses who did not cooperate against Mark Battilana were to be intimidated in an effort to get damaging testimony against Mark Battilana. I know that witnesses who cooperated against Mark Battilana were assigned to favorable positions within the Sheriff's Office. I also know that people who would not cooperate against Mark Battilana were transferred to undesirable positions. I believe that during the appeal hearing of Mark Battilana, Dave Hendershott and Jadel Roe were less than truthful during their testimony. I strongly believe that the Sheriff's Office had no grounds in which to terminate Mark Battilana.