Maricopa County Craziness

Andrew Thomas' Apparent Defense for Upcoming Bar Hearing: A (Taxpayer Funded) Trial for Don Stapley

As disgraced former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas continues to piss away taxpayer money preparing for his upcoming state Bar ethics hearing, his apparent defense is becoming more clear: attack Maricopa County Supervisor Don Stapley.

County sources tell New Times Thomas' attorney, Don Wilson, has subpoenaed Gila County Attorney Daisy Flores, asking that she turn over boxes of documents used in her investigation into the county supervisor.

Wilson didn't immediately return our call this afternoon, but the theory, we presume, is to vindicate Thomas by trashing Stapley at the hearing.

The problem for Thomas, obviously, is that he's failed -- time and time again -- to prove that Stapley's broken any laws. Not to mention, his political witch hunts are the reason he's in such hot water in the first place.

After the second round of indictments against Stapley were turned over to her office, Flores wrote a letter to Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery, in which, she called the behavior of Thomas and the former deputy county attorney he used in politically charged cases, Lisa Aubuchon, "egregious."

She noted that while some crimes may have been committed, they were unprosecutable because of the behavior of the prosecutors.

"The vast record is littered with behavior so egregious ... that a reasonable person's sense of fairness, honesty, and integrity would be offended," she wrote. "It seems unlikely that any other elected official in Maricopa County has had their personal life subjected to this level of scrutiny.

"Importantly, the prior prosecutors [Aubuchon and Thomas] in this matter abdicated their roles as ministers of justice and their conduct was so egregious that we are unwilling to even attempt to justify it."

County sources say the documents Thomas' attorneys seek isn't just a manila envelope full of papers -- it's more like boxes (and boxes) of documents that will take a lot of billable hours to sort through. But what does Thomas care? The county's picking up the tab for his legal bills.

Initially, the BOS granted Thomas $100,000 -- in taxpayer money -- to defend himself in his upcoming hearing. He's already ripped through at least $86,000 of that money, and a hearing date hasn't even been set.

With boxes of documents to sort through -- and county cash pay for it -- there's a new candidate for best job ever: Andrew Thomas' attorney.

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James King
Contact: James King