As confirmed by both Arpaio and his Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan, the MCSO hired Seattle computer guy Dennis Montgomery as a confidential informant to investigate a bizarre conspiracy theory involving the CIA, the U.S. Department of Justice, and various judges, including federal Judge G. Murray Snow, the judge overseeing the contempt trial for Arpaio, Sheridan and three other current and former MCSO honchos.
My sources suggest that the price tag for this investigation runs anywhere from $500,000 to $1 million. This total includes payments to Montgomery, sometimes as much as $10,000 per month, the purchase of $50,000 of computer equipment, and the airfare and travel costs associated with flying to Seattle and back MCSO Detective Brian Mackiewicz, Sergeant Travis Anglin, and Cold Case Posse commander Mike Zullo.
On the stand before Judge Snow in April, Sheridan identified Mackiewicz as being "in charge of the investigation." I first revealed his involvement in my initial June 2014 column on the subject.
According to my sources, his duties included delivering CI payments to Montgomery. These were made in cash, from RICO money assigned to the MCSO's confidential informant fund.
I'm told a CI normally signs for the money using his or her CI number. Montgomery's is 1437.
Sheridan practically signed off on a blank check when it came to expenses for Mackiewicz, Zullo, and Anglin.
The chief deputy explained to Snow that the supposed software guru was more productive when the deputies were around.
However, there is evidence that Mackiewicz enjoyed himself immensely while babysitting Montgomery for the sheriff.
In Seattle, Mackiewicz liked to hit local bars and restaurants, sometimes with Zullo and Anglin along for the ride. Mackiewicz also visited Seattle-area wineries.
One photo of Mackiewicz at an unidentified winery graced his Facebook page in a post dated March 30, 2014.
Mackiewicz is a favorite of Chief Deputy Sheridan, who protects Mackiewicz from any serious discipline.
Mackiewicz since has deactivated his account. But while it was public, I scored screenshots of it, like the one above.
Apparently, Mackiewicz had more than one gal pal while in Seattle. This was in keeping with his reputation in the office as a ladies man, or at le ast a wanna-be ladies man.
Mackiewicz's personnel file includes more than one incident where he's alleged to have engaged in inappropriate conduct.
In a written reprimand dated March 16, 2014, Mackiewicz was taken to task for his behavior toward two female employees of the MCSO.
One a lleged that Mackiewicz "approached her from behind while she sat at her work station and felt her bare back through an opening in her blouse."
When the employee said, "Don't touch me," Mackiewicz slithered away.
The next day, he allegedly made a comment to this employee about her "taking off her clothes in front of me."
When the woman said, "Excuse me?" Mackiewicz retreated, though she complained that Mackiewicz "would sporadically come by her work area and make kissing sounds toward her."
Mackiewicz denied making the kissing sounds, but he admitted to the back touch.
"At no point was I trying to cop a feel or try to get underneath her shirt or anything like that," Mackiewicz assured an investigator.
Another woman at the MCSO described Mackiewicz as "touchy feel-y," and claimed he would blow kisses at her and compliment her on "how nice she looked in that skirt."
He would also kiss her hand and hold her hand longer than normal, which she called "creepy."
Mackiewicz was found in violation of several office policies regarding professionalism and admonished that "further misconduct of this nature" could involve more severe discipline, "up to and including termination."
It was not the first such complaint about Mackiewicz's behavior.
In 2002, Mackiewicz was chastised for "unbecoming conduct and public demeanor" in two incidents.
The first occurred at the county Medical Examiner's Office, while attending an autopsy.
There, Mackiewicz allegedly "made a comment about another decedent's genitalia (not assigned to his investigation) and compared it to his own genitalia."
Witnesses say he also took a photo of the dead man's "swollen" genitalia, and used the word "fuck" excessively.
Mackiewicz copped to the bad behavior, saying he took the photo for his scrapbook of other cases, and he admitted to making inappropriate comments about the man's junk.
"I probably was jokin'," Mackiewicz said in his IA interview,"[and] said oh my God, look at that, you know I wish I could be like that guy...somethin' to that effect."
The other incident involved rude remarks allegedly made by Mackiewicz (while off duty) to women who worked with Child Protective Services.
Mackiewicz was alleged to have told an African-American woman that "his cock would be just as good as a black guy's cock, plus other comments similar to that."
Witnesses say [Mackiewicz] also took a photo of the dead man's "swollen" genitalia, and used the word "fuck" excessively.
One woman said Mackiewicz and the African-American woman would discuss whom they would sleep with while looking at an issue of People magazine.
The detective also was alleged to have made comments about women's breasts such as "look at the rack on that one."
The report on these incidents says the allegations were "sustained," that Mackiewicz was warned not to do it again.
There are other IAs in Mackiewicz's file, but there is only so much time in the day, people.
Mackiewicz currently is assigned to the MCSO's "threats management unit," where he investigates alleged threats against Sheriff Joe. He's sometimes quoted in the media concerning these (usually bogus) threats.
He gets to travel a lot, and not just to Seattle. In 2012, he traveled at county expense to Hawaii as part of Arpaio's ridiculous investigation of President Obama's birth certificate. Total cost to the taxpayer: $9,628.21.
A pittance compared to the cost of the Montgomery affair.
It's well-known at the MCSO that Mackiewicz is a favorite of Chief Deputy Sheridan, who regularly picks Mackiewicz for special assignments and protects Mackiewicz from any serious discipline.
I have more on Mackiewicz, gleaned from individuals who interacted with him in Seattle, among other sources, such as his Facebook posts and the Facebook posts of others.
Which should give you something to look forward to in future reports.