Ellman claimed that the sheriff's men first tried to sell the fund as a nonprofit organization and that he wrote the $25,000 check in April 2007 from his nonprofit foundation. He told investigators that he didn't think the money would be used to help Arpaio politically. Ellman and his wife already had given the maximum $390 apiece to Arpaio's 2008 campaign, he said.

Even if the SCA were a legitimate PAC — which it wasn't — it wouldn't be allowed to accept earmarked five-figure donations.

Though Hendershott, Black, and Fox must have been familiar with Arizona's campaign-finance rules, it's unclear whether the biggest contributors to the SCA knew they were breaking the law.

Patrick Faricy
Deputy Chief Larry Black
Dennis Gilman
Deputy Chief Larry Black

Jim Wikert, a Coyotes investor and occasional business partner of Ellman's from Dallas, told investigators that Hendershott, Black, and, possibly, Brian Sands first sold him on the idea of a nonprofit fund that would help deputies or be used to assist injured or fallen officers. Wikert had known Arpaio and Hendershott for years — a few years earlier, they had given him a tour of Tent City.

The Dallas businessman recalls several conversations with the sheriff's men about the fund, though he said he never spoke about it with Arpaio. At one point, Ellman called him and suggested that Wikert's donation be $25,000, like his. Then, Hendershott called and told him exactly how to make out the check.

Wikert cut a check for $25,000 on April 15, 2007, to the Command Officers Association and sent it directly to Black's Mesa home. But the check's memo field had a note that said "pac contribution," which Hendershott almost certainly didn't tell him to write. Asked about that by investigators, Wikert's memory went blank. He didn't remember writing it — maybe one of his assistants wrote it, he said. No, he didn't think that the money would be used to help Arpaio politically, he added, going on that he and his wife already had contributed the max to the sheriff's campaign.

In mid-July 2007, Wikert was in Alaska and called Ellman to invite him on a multi-day fishing trip. He told investigators Ellman asked whether it would be okay if he brought up a few sheriff's guys with him on the plane. The Valley developer took along Hendershott, Black, Sands, and now-retired Deputy Tom Tyo. Wikert recalls plenty of talk about the SCA fund on the trip.

At Big Bear Lake in Alaska, Black pulled Ellman's April check out of his wallet and explained that the idea for a nonprofit had fallen through. The SCA needed a check that didn't come from Ellman's nonprofit foundation. On the last day of the trip, July 15, Ellman wrote a new $25,000 check to the Command Officers Association.

Tom Gimple, an Alaska businessman who'd been on the fishing trip, sent his own $25,000 check much later — it was dated New Year's Eve 2007. Like Wikert, Gimple accidentally offered future investigators evidence of illegal earmarking by writing on the check, "Vote for Sheriff Joe Arpaio." Investigators later found in Fox's home a letter signed by Gimple and dated December 30, 2007. The short note read: "Enclosed is my personal check in the amount of $25,000. Please accept this donation in support of the 'Vote for Sheriff Joe Arpaio' campaign."

B.M. "Mac" Rankin, a Texas businessman who is a vice president of the Phoenix-based Freeport-McMoran mining company wasn't on the trip but told investigators he chucked in $5,000 on August 1, 2007, after discussing the fund with either Hendershott or Black. James Liautaud of Jimmy John's Sandwiches, headquartered in Illinois, donated $10,000 in February 2008 from his corporate account.

Nick Fergis, a self-employed investor from Scottsdale, wired $10,000 to the SCA account in January 2008 during a Christmas party at the house of Scottsdale lawyer Jordan Rose. The former posse member said he called Hendershott, who told him how and where to send the money.

Because Jordan Rose's husband, Jason, worked as Arpaio's political consultant in 2004, New Times asked him whether he had mentioned the fund to Fergis. Rose denied that he talked to Fergis about it or that he knew anything about the dealings of the SCA.

The company linked to Courtesy Chevrolet, which provided vehicles to the MCSO, donated $1,500 to the fund. The check was submitted under the name of Transportation Management Company. The firm is affiliated with Fox Rent A Car, which was paid about $500,000 by the county in 2009.

The SCA's well was now polluted with the ink of prohibited contributions.


As Fox and Black continued work on their election-related mission in 2007, they also anguished over their relationship.

While Fox was on vacation, he and Black exchanged several e-mails. Their subject was that Fox apparently thought Black was upset to learn that Fox might have planned a trip to Fiji without him. And the same apparently romantic, religion-tinged themes from 2006 were echoed.

Black tells his subordinate that, for now, he'll stick with "Larry's religion" but would "definitely follow the church of Joel" if it ever opened.

In a long e-mail by Fox sent on August 4, the sheriff's captain writes that during their many hours alone in Louisiana, "I gave you everything I had. Everything I know about living, attitude, excellence, believing in yourself, trust, loving, friendship . . . life. I laid it all out. Up to that point, I gave you what I thought you might accept. Right or wrong, I don't want to hurt you . . . I don't want to overwhelm you."

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My Voice Nation Help
149 comments
malasangre
malasangre

the best part of this story is the right twisting in pain to ok these guys

WhatASurprise
WhatASurprise

Is Larry Black the brother of former Liquor Commission Assistant Department head Tim Black?

Cgamble49
Cgamble49

how come we (ARIZONA) end up with all the crazy people, (Brewer,Horne,Joe,Pearce,etc.)

Chucklereader
Chucklereader

woohoo, finding love within the confines of the mcso.This is better then reading savage love.

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HARLEYKINGMAN
HARLEYKINGMAN

THIS IS REALLY STARTING 2 GET OLD ! IF THESE 2 MUD PACKERS WANT 2 VISIT EACH OTHERS CHOCOLATE STREET , LET THEM ! IT'S THEIR LIFE , LET THEM AND ONLY THEM LIVE IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Guest
Guest

ray stern, it seems obvious to anyone who can read that "what happened" in LA (Louisiana) was the unexpected death of Deputy Gary Labenz. Clearly, it affected Fox and Black deeply. Having smeared two long-time employees of MCSO for expressing their feelings to each other about his death, i sure hope you have actual PROOF that Captain Joel Fox and Larry Black are homosexual lovers, as you've so obviously implied....otherwise, you're gonna lose your ass in the forthcoming lawsuit. Good luck.

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Alexander
Alexander

Pretty blockbuster stuff if its all true. I feel like they could have left the gay part out- if it was just two drinking buddies squandering taxpayer funds & misusing authority, I think folks would be equally up in arms.

Church lady
Church lady

New Times you guys are on fire. Keep up the excellent reporting. Expose these so called "hero."

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Anon
Anon

Typically the New Times embraces Homo-sexuality, unless it is a useful ploy to smear someone. If I were gay I would be outraged by this stab in the back and would boycott the businesses that advertise in this rag. Even if I were straight, I still would. There is far too much of hate mongering and hate bating by this rag. We need solutions not problems in this world.

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Chris In Tempe
Chris In Tempe

I honestly do not care if these men love each other or have sex together. That's none of my business. I don't understand the entire homosexual thing, but as a straight guy and a moderate old-school conservative, it doesn't affect me. Why should I give a damn about what two men do in bed? Doesn't have any bearing on my life!

This is something the new-fangled right wing conservatives should think about. What is it exactly about people's bedroom antics that make you think it's any of your business? You're supposed to be Conservatives, meaning minimal Big Brother Government attitudes. So butt out of what ain't your concern.

On the other hand, what does bother me is the lousy job the MCSO has long been doing as a law enforcement agency. Pushing a $100 million in legal costs, maybe over that by now. Endless lawsuits, mostly lost. Wrongful deaths in our jails, including a mother's unborn child. Crime ignored all over the county to fund Dog and Pony shows about illegal aliens.

Hell, MCSO isn't even all that effective at catching illegals. They completely ignore major offenders and chase the least worrisome, least costly, easiest to catch illegals while catching damned few of them AT VERY HIGH COST!

Wish I had the power, I'd fire the top 50 ranking people in MCSO. Be they law enforcement or public relations or what have you. Start at the top, boot out a bunch of these clowns.

WhatASurprise
WhatASurprise

Hotel pay per view move receipts from their trip together confirm that the pair watched Brokeback Mountain 37 times in their hotel room

WhatASurprise
WhatASurprise

It's confirmed. MCSO just hired Lt. Dangel of Reno 911 fame.

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HARLEYKINGMAN
HARLEYKINGMAN

2 MORE QUEER BOYS DYING 2 HIT EACH OTHER UP THE BUTT !

Ronny1note
Ronny1note

Wow, How embarrassing for them. Why does the media feel the need to disclose this stuff. It sounds really private and personal. Why is this an issue? Are we living in the 1950's again? How bout some real news?

Vickie
Vickie

No wonder Sheriff Joe is so "Hard-On" capturing illegals!!You can't bring charges of "Love In The 2nd Degree" if you're booted out of the country!!!Who will listen to you? lolLarry "Rubber Lips" Black. LOL

Vickie
Vickie

Sheriff Joe stars in: "The SugarPlum Sheriff".Rated R

Pf
Pf

What a moronic reporter....and news organization? The height of queer.

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Coyotesfan123
Coyotesfan123

It must be odd wanting a career in law enforcement only to be hired by MCSO and become part of a corrupt criminal organization.

Patraulea2323
Patraulea2323

I hear there's a new movie being filmed in Arizona: "Brokeback Sheriffs" :-)

MaricopaFail
MaricopaFail

Hahaha figures these dirty pigs would be gay too. So its not the inmates raping each other, its Joe and his ass pirates!

your nightmare
your nightmare

RUASSHOLE PIERCE, YOUR NEW NAME......Mr. Az. state governor.

Usgovfail
Usgovfail

Hey phoenixtimes, why don't you do some real investigative work and try and find the people who beat this giants fan to death. I bet they are LA dodgers fans, probably mexicans from LA, probably illegal too. http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/s...

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Sucitup
Sucitup

teen porn sites?ouch

To Tonka II
To Tonka II

Ok, so the two Deputies Bumped Butts, who cares, not my business. As for Sheriff Joe - That man does an extremely good job. He is prone to listen to others under him and not be in complete control, but Joe is honest and above board.

How do I knwo so much you ask? Because I'm around these men every day of the week.

Church Lady
Church Lady

To quote a great lady "Well, isn't that special?" Church lady would be disappointed with all the grab assing in Maricopa and well as Pinal County Sheriff's Office. Babeu the Church Lady is coming after you!

mike
mike

You have to clean out the bowl before you make the frosting.

paulA
paulA

straight dudes don't talk to each other like that.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

Alexander, I don't think anyone really gives a rip if these two are actually physical lovers. The salient part about this whole issue is that Black and Fox were NOT being truthful about their involvement in the SCA criminal actions, and they were hiding their relationship, to the point of Fox actually having a hidden email account for their emotional exchanges. Putting any criminal activity aside how do you think the families of these two must feel, if indeed they are physical lovers? Imagine the danger involved for the wives, who likely didn't have a clue as to the extent of their involvement?

I think the reporter was correct to include all facets of their activity.

mike
mike

that's funny, I pictured Black as the top too...

Tina
Tina

Just change the names of these two wayward spouses (Black and Fox) to one being male, the other female.

Doesn't make any difference if those two are homosexual, heterosexual or bi-sexual.

The bottom line is the pervasive, deliberate, crafty and knowingly unlawful activity, initiated by Hendershott to unlawfully obtain illegal campaign contributions for the SOLE purpose of re-electing ONE political office holder (Arpaio), with re-election of his partner in crime (Thomas) being thrown in for good measure. All knowingly unlawful from day one.

While the emails might add some insight and speculation as to why the cover-up and dishonesty to investigators and the court lasted so long, it doesn't alter the purposefully unlawful actions of top people in this law enforcement agency, and the sheriff's pecking order that carried out the devious plan.

Keep the focus. MCSO, remember, is a LAW enforcement agency.

HARLEYKINGMAN
HARLEYKINGMAN

ILL BET AS THEY WATCHED BROKE BACK MOUNTAIN , THEY PLAYED BEING THE 2 QUEER COWBOYS WHO WERE IN LUV WITH EACH OTHER AND TAKING TURNS GOING UP CHOCOLATE STREET !

Cindysince1992
Cindysince1992

This is news, it's news when my taxes are paying their salaries !!!

Coyotesfan123
Coyotesfan123

It is Phoenix New Times right? Los Angeles New Times. Besides I hope hope law enforcement would investigate a murder.

busman
busman

thats right the illegals are to blame for this right you bigot! just admint your most conservative racist friends are gay!!!! ROTFL...

be*nice
be*nice

Or...perhaps YOUR PEOPLE! You are so rude nd racist.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

Tina, nicely said.... I always enjoy your written word.

 
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