Hugh Ennis likes a good joke. Especially when it has a cop theme. Take the toy police car resting near his window at the Liquor Department, for instance. Like the slapstick autos that zoom around a circus ring, this one looks as though a squad of battery-powered minicop-clowns will tumble out any minute, blowing whistles and stumbling over each other. But instead it holds a little bottle of whiskey. A whiskey-filled cop car in the office of the superintendent of the Department of Liquor Licenses and Control. Get it?

And then for a real knee-slapper, there's this spiked metal ball hanging from a chain on a coat rack near the desk. "That's my negotiating tool," says Ennis, and then he details how, back when he was a Phoenix cop, he confiscated the medieval-style weapon "from a drug addict."

The "negotiating tool" and the sauced-up squad car say a lot about the way things are at the Liquor Department. Current staffers, ex-employees and lawyers who practice before the State Liquor Board report strange goings-on since Ennis took over the department in 1988.

The Liquor Department's fifty-person staff issues liquor licenses and monitors establishments that already have them. The job is called "working liquor" by the law enforcement types attracted to it.

But Ennis has been criticized for turning the department into too much of a police-style agency complete with an internal-investigations bureau that targets employees within the department who cross the bosses.

The probes and counterprobes sometimes revolve around such themes as who called whom a "weenie." That particular controversy wound up in court.

One of the problems, critics say, is that the superintendent has a Dick Tracy management style, sees things in black or white and doesn't back down even when he knows he's made a mistake.

For instance, he was more than a little bullheaded in his fight to ensure that booze is available in the pricey skyboxes at Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium during Phoenix Cardinals games. He privately cut a deal to let the fat cats drink while the average fans couldn't. When the deal was made public, it infuriated Arizona Attorney General Bob Corbin and many of Ennis' investigators, but Ennis refused to reverse his decision.

During the combat that followed, Ennis was accused of dirty tactics--like dragging an investigation so that it stretched out for the entire football season. Critics point out that the delay ensured that Ennis' skybox deal would be protected until the season was over.

The following year, Ennis took advantage of a legal loophole to use his authority as superintendent to write a special rule that had the effect of allowing booze in the skyboxes. Permanently.

All of this has angered some members of the Liquor Board, which is appointed by the governor to hear touchy liquor cases, but which has limited control over the superintendent. Some board members, including Kay McKay, the outgoing chair, support a bill now traveling through the Arizona State Legislature that would drastically curb the superintendent's power.

Ennis has suggested that his detractors are "character assassins" who hope to paint a nasty picture of him so that newly elected Governor J. Fife Symington III will not reappoint him as superintendent. Symington's aide Chris Herstam says the governor probably will decide in the next few weeks. He would not say whether Ennis will remain on his throne.

Ennis doesn't look like an iron-fisted dictator. He's in his sixties, tall but stooped. He has the look of a Fifties-era police officer in a Norman Rockwell painting, the kind of cop who would stop on a hot summer day to wipe the melted popsicle off a kid's face.

None of this is s~~urprising since Ennis served for 22 years on the Phoenix Police Department. After retiring, he served as security director for the Arizona Lottery. Upon his ouster by former governor Evan Mecham, Ennis ran a lottery-consulting business, advising other state governments on the fine points of lottery security. In 1988 he was appointed liquor czar by Governor Rose Mofford, a longtime friend.

Like Mofford, Ennis talks with an old-time Arizona twang. And just like Mofford, he has a desk flanked by an oversize Arizona flag and an oversize American flag.

That's the same kind of overblown self-importance many insiders attribute to Ennis' "hatchet man," Thomas Jonovich. He is a short, muscular Phoenix ex-cop who was brought into the Liquor Department by his old friend Ennis in 1988 for $55,963 a year, about twice the salary of his predecessor.

Jonovich is Chief of Investigations, both internal and external. Everybody calls him "The Chief." Just like his hero John Wayne, whose posters adorn his office, Jonovich wears a big badge on his hip. And a gun. "The Chief" also insists on giving investigators military-style ranks, like "sergeant" and "lieutenant" and has demanded that his squad of mostly paunchy middle-aged liquor sleuths carry guns while on duty. That can lead to problems. A while back, investigator Steve Schrimpf made a mistake with his new gun and accidentally sent a bullet whizzing into the office floor. ("Jesus, that was stupid," Schrimpf recalled when asked about it.)

Mandatory weapons are a big change from previous administrations. The Liquor Department gumshoes have always spent, and still do spend, most of their working hours doing paperwork or sitting around in bars on undercover assignments--two activities that don't usually require loaded guns or military titles. Even when they go on raids, liquor sleuths usually are accompanied by armed cops from other agencies. But Jonovich and Ennis say it is their statutory mission to turn the investigators into bona fide "law enforcement officers."

Jonovich's zeal is the target of insider jokes. But he also is feared. Several people, including former and current department staffers and an attorney familiar with the department, have told New Times that Jonovich unleashed a vendetta against the team of Liquor Department investigators who had been critical of Ennis' method of sanctioning booze in the ASU skyboxes.

"Jonovich formed a special internal investigations unit and put a lot of pressure on the staff," says Steve Reynolds, a decorated Vietnam veteran who was a supervisor of one of the investigators who looked into the Ennis-skybox issue. "We spent hours in interviews going over countless documents that didn't amount to a hill of beans. They used police-agency tactics to psychologically brutalize us. It got so bad employees were carrying tape recorders around because they didn't trust each other."

Jonovich calls the accusation an "out-and-out lie," and Ennis denies that a post-skybox internal bloodletting ever happened. "They've said that to the civil service board," he says. "They've said it everywhere. There was talk of a civil suit, but there never was one. I know why. There's no basis for one."

Of course, the sword cuts both ways. As soon as staffers figured out they were being investigated, they in turn began to investigate Ennis and Jonovich. After months of snooping around, several investigators say the two most powerful people at the Liquor Department were taking care of their private businesses on state time--Ennis owns a lottery-consulting business and Jonovich sells municipal bonds. They both deny the accusations.

THE STORIES ABOUT the department's investigations and counterinvestigations make a person a little fuzzy-headed: Investigators investigating each other, instead of the state's saloons. It's like a Keystone Kops movie, complete with a touch of pathos. These are the kinds of stories you might hear during a drinking bout with pals.

But then the Liquor Department has always been a little crazy.
In the Sixties, there was news of public officials, including legislators, involved in the under-the-table sale of liquor licenses. In the Eighties, Attorney General Bob Corbin alleged that Peerless Importers, a New York firm that sold about one quarter of the booze in Arizona, was linked to the Mafia. Peerless denied the charges, but chose to avoid public hearings by permanently turning in its license.

And then there were the Mecham appointees. First there was Alberto Rodriguez, a former cop from southern Arizona who'd been linked with a shooting in Mexico. The legislature wouldn't confirm Rodriguez's appointment, so Mecham replaced Rodriguez with Thad Curtis, another ex-cop from southern Arizona. Curtis wanted to revamp the Department of Public Safety. But instead, Mecham asked him to revamp the Liquor Department. He did, sort of, by tying up the staff with raids on bars that served booze to college students with fake I.D.'s.

Sandwiched between the Peerless Period and the Mechamite Era were the Golden Days, the two years from 1985 to 1987 when a lawyer named Philip MacDonnell was superintendent. MacDonnell, an appointee of Democratic Governor Bruce Babbitt, actually focused on something important. He was known for ordering detailed background checks to see if licenses had "hidden owners," like organized-crime thugs whose rap sheets prevented them from legitimately obtaining liquor licenses. MacDonnell wanted to ferret out these "fronts." (MacDonnell doesn't toot his own horn about this. Now in private practice, he often appears before the Liquor Board and would not return repeated telephone calls for this article.) During the Golden Days, the department treated all licensees more fairly, investigators say.

Under Ennis, several people say, "mom and pop" bars get more scrutiny and less service from the department than do big-time saloons. One lawyer calls this arbitrary treatment "policy du jour."

The Prescott Sheraton, for instance, belongs to a corporation headed by a member of the family of construction giant W.M. Grace. The hotel got a liquor license in record time. That may be because Grace himself wrote the Liquor Department and asked to "expedite" the application.

It did. In the Prescott Sheraton file at the Liquor Department, one staffer angrily jotted down that he had been pressured by Hal Pershall, the assistant superintendent, to okay the license even "when it was brought in incomplete." A DPS officer was immediately alerted and hand-delivered the necessary information to the Liquor Department. This enabled the hotel to serve booze a month after the application had been made.

The usual wait is three months, but the hotel couldn't even wait one month. Because it sits on land owned by the Yavapai tribe, the hotel management persuaded the tribe to apply for a temporary license so the hotel could serve booze for its opening. Trouble was, the hotel violated liquor laws during the time it was operating with the Indians' permit, according to Ennis.

Guess who got fined by the Liquor Department? The Indians.
Ennis' reasoning? The Indians owned the temporary license. Some people would point out that it was the Sheraton that violated the liquor laws.

Hugh Ennis always acts like he does the right thing. For instance, he seems to think that he did his old friend Rose Mofford a favor in 1988 when he agreed to take on the superintendent's post, which pays $67,173 a year. Ennis always calls Mofford "Rose" and says he's known her for years, because her ex-husband Lefty (now deceased) also had been a Phoenix cop.

Ennis says when he took over as superintendent, the Liquor Department was a "pretty demoralized outfit."

Especially the investigations unit, which Jonovich says suffered from "a lot of bitterness, petty jealousies and pretty sad antics in terms of character assassinations, backbiting and infighting."

So what's changed?
Not much.

A FEW MONTHS AGO, a female investigator filed a sexual harassment complaint against a male co-worker. He responded by accusing the woman of breaking wind in a department car while the two were on assignment.

Asked whether the male co-worker's allegation might be a little petty, Jonovich says only that "if employees are offended by something, we have to look at it. It's addressed and it's handled."

And there is the story of how Curly Moore, a Liquor Department staffer who checked to make sure bars are complying with liquor laws, got caught last year shoplifting cologne in a Smitty's store.

Moore resigned, but some people say he should have been fired. Moore, a former Yavapai County sheriff, was resented because many thought he was hired simply because he was a friend of Mofford's and Ennis'.

Ennis says he hired Moore because he was competent, not because he was a friend. But he has more sympathy for Moore than he does for some other ex-employees. He says the shoplifting probably occurred because Moore was despondent over losing a re-election bid. "He didn't know how to say, `I'm having a lot of trouble dealing with what's going on in my life,'" Ennis says of his fellow cop. "He just as well as hung a sign around his neck that said, `I'm a shoplifter.'"

A couple of months ago, Jonovich himself was reprimanded by Ennis for racing along at 102 mph in an official car en route to Douglas.

"I did it. I'm guilty. It's mine," says Jonovich. "I had no idea I was going that speed." Jonovich points out that he has a formal reprimand in his file and had to take a day off work without pay. And he emphasizes that he paid to attend traffic school on his day off.

Jonovich and other investigators have put their time, energy and state dollars into other pursuits. There was a time, for example, when the investigations unit of the Liquor Department was obsessed with sausages. Last year, investigator Norman Perkins sued Jonovich and another co-worker, Garry Shumann, for insulting his manliness by calling him a "missing weenie." It's difficult to tell from the legal papers at Maricopa County Superior Court who's more juvenile--Perkins or his tormentors.

In the lawsuit, Perkins complained that his life was made miserable by obscene drawings of sausages on memos and organizational charts. He says Shumann and Jonovich began the weenie crusade after they learned Perkins had been arrested in the Sixties for vagrancy, simple assault, and ironically, aiding and abetting a drunk driver. Perkins says he was never charged for the crimes.

Shumann, Perkins, Jonovich, and Ennis wouldn't comment on the case, scheduled for trial later this spring.

That wasn't the first time Jonovich had been sued for, in effect, bullying.

In 1981, a Phoenix police officer named Frank Gentry sued the City of Phoenix, Jonovich and several other city cops for "retaliatory investigations."

Gentry was moonlighting as a security guard, a job he took only after getting all the necessary approvals from his police superiors. A few months later, the very superiors who had approved his moonlighting reprimanded Gentry for it. After he filed grievances, he was transferred to a precinct where Jonovich was a sergeant. Jonovich and others ordered him not to talk to anyone in the office except for "victims, witnesses or suspects."

When Gentry passed notes to communicate with his fellow officers, his superiors told him his behavior was "bizarre." He was moved to a small room where he had to ask permission to go to the bathroom. "They essentially stopped me from doing my job," he says. After several internal investigations, Gentry was fired.

But after a few years of battling in the Arizona courts, he was ordered reinstated with full back pay and pension benefits.

Jonovich denies that he is a bully--then or now. He dismisses the complaints as "typical of personnel situations," saying, "That happens pretty much when you have employees who are not satisfied with the way things are going for them."

SEVERAL FORMER and current investigators say Ennis and Jonovich operate by a double standard. They accuse the two bosses of taking care of private business on state time--accusations that would prompt internal investigations if leveled against others in the department.

Maybe there haven't been investigations, but some of the underlings have spied on their bosses and even written internal memos about it.

Ennis' lottery-consulting business has evolved after he was fired as head of security for the Arizona Lottery by Mecham in 1987. Ennis says Mofford gave him special permission to keep the business as long as he didn't work on state time or with state equipment. "I have walked into Hugh Ennis' office and heard him discussing his lottery business over the phone," claims Ralph Robinson, a retired DPS captain who was demoted to an investigator after being replaced by Jonovich.

An internal memo reveals that Robinson also claims to have overheard the office clerical staff grousing about a trusted Ennis aide tying up a department copy machine to duplicate papers relating to Ennis' lottery-consulting business. Ennis says he "absolutely does not" conduct private business on state time. "Quite the opposite," he says, explaining that he transfers liquor business, like the budget, to a floppy disk and runs it on his computer at home.

This all happened at about the same time investigator Steve Schrimpf was investigated for taking a friend for a ride in a staff car. He also was reprimanded for "unintentionally falsifying" a work log by saying he went to the doctor at two o'clock in the afternoon, when he really went to the doctor at twelve. He was investigated for this, too.

Schrimpf--the guy who also had shot a bullet into the office floor--holds no grudges. He says Ennis and Jonovich have been unjustly criticized for simply trying to bring the department up to snuff. He does admit, though, that even now "a lot that should be handled at the supervisory level ends up being investigated."

In this atmosphere, it figures that Jonovich himself would be spied upon. Robinson and former investigator Bill Hall both say they've heard Jonovich talk about his investments business on the telephone during office hours. Jonovich doesn't deny those chats. "I've had clients call me in the office. I reserve the right to talk to anybody about anything at any time," he says. Even so, he insists these telephone calls do not amount to doing business in his office.

"From what I recall," says Hall, who sat next to Jonovich's office, "he would talk to people about things that applied to his business on the phone. He did not say, `Call me back later.' He gave advice right then and there on the phone."

Hall says he eventually had his desk moved because he feared he would be punished for knowing about the conversations. "Whatever you said about Jonovich came back on you," he says. Eventually Hall resigned to become an Arizona State University cop. "It took me a long time to get used to the fact that where I work now, people aren't paranoid."

LIQUOR BOARD CHAIR Kay McKay has spent a lot of her time in the dark about the department's capers. She says she did not know about the weenie suit or the shoplifting escapade or the allegation that Jonovich had unleashed a vendetta against investigators who'd been critical of Ennis.

"My God, this sounds like Watergate!" she says.
It's also evidence that communication between the Liquor Department and the Liquor Board is terrible. Ennis and the board have been at odds since Ennis' booze-in-the-skybox ruling, which some board members opposed because they thought it was unfair that the poor slobs in the stands were prohibited from drinking.

McKay explains her strained professional relationship with the superintendent this way: "I think Hugh Ennis doesn't like me very much. I think the department likes me because I've stood up to him." Then she adds: "Maybe I'm being paranoid, but I want you to make it clear that all these allegations come from inside the department and not from me. He's going to think I made these allegations. He always thinks so.

"He's going to be hysterical that I even talked to the newspaper."
McKay supports Senate Bill 1154, which, if passed by the legislature this session, would give the board absolute and sole power to set liquor policy. The seven-member Liquor Board is technically part of the Department of Liquor Licenses and Control. But the Liquor Department is a unique agency--the superintendent and the board are not by law responsible to each other and are equally powerful. The Arizona Auditor General pointed out in 1987 that someone ought to be in control, that the responsibilities should be more clearly divided by state law.

The way it works now, the superintendent has a $2.1 million budget to direct a staff of about fifty people who monitor about 8,000 licensees statewide, mete out fines and punishment to establishments that break liquor laws and grant new licenses.

The board, on the other hand, hears appeals of license holders who don't like the superintendent's discipline. It also hears cases of "protested" licenses, which means that the license applicant is flagged for a board hearing. Usually, a protested applicant has an allegedly touchy background or is in trouble, for, say, back taxes. What bothers McKay is that the board has no way of knowing how many licenses should have been protested by Ennis' staff but escaped board hearings.

Recently this has happened at least twice.
Harold Freeland was granted a license in November 1989 for a Mexican eatery in north Phoenix called T.J.'s, according to department records. He got the license without a board hearing, despite an unusual history.

Freeland's file includes a long list of arrests that he admitted to. He said he'd been arrested in 1975 for "wagering on sports" and was fined $4,000 and put on five years' probation. Plus, he owned up to arrests for disorderly conduct and insufficient funds, and he had numerous speeding tickets.

This isn't the type of case that should skirt by without a hearing, says McKay. In March 1990, Leslie Newton's case slipped through the cracks. This angered investigator Liz Lenzen, who wrote in a scathing memo that she had wanted the board to hear the case. Newton was automatically granted a license, however, because a key procedure was ignored.

Lenzen said she marked Newton's file with a stick-on blue dot, the customary way to tag a case to be set for a board hearing. The licensing department retorted in a memo that it hadn't seen the blue dot. This bureaucratic nonsense caused Lenzen to lose patience. "I am willing to take a polygraph exam if necessary," she wrote. Then she blasted Ed Cassidy, another ex-Phoenix cop whom Ennis hired to head the licensing division: "I feel that I am again being harassed by Ed Cassidy in a lame attempt to have a mistake he made covered up. I feel at this point very intimidated to point out problems and solutions . . . ." Frank Malody, a former Phoenix police officer whom Ennis hired to conduct internal investigations, suggests that people who gripe about Ennis and Jonovich are motivated by "payback and revenge." He says his bosses hold employees to a "higher degree of accountability." While not commenting specifically on his investigations, Malody says Ennis and Jonovich "started new work standards and work ethics that these people weren't used to. Instead of adapting, the turmoil increased."

"These are honest people," he says of Jonovich and Ennis. THE MOST PUBLIC of recent Liquor Department follies--the Skybox Escapade--began in 1988. That's when the Metropolitan Sports Alliance, a nonprofit group of business people obsessed with bringing professional sports to the Valley, sent out letters promising alcohol in skyboxes during professional football games.

Enter Ennis, who in the spring of 1989 privately carved out a deal with ASU attorney Bruce Meyerson. Ennis says the deal had Mofford's approval and was "perfectly legal." In a nutshell, they figured out a way to skirt the law that bans the consumption of alcohol on state university property by arranging for an ASU "skybox liaison" to contract with the Biltmore Hotel and Sun Devil Liquors to provide food and booze for the skyboxes. Attorney General Bob Corbin was not consulted. Neither was the Liquor Board.

"The issue is who decides what's good for Sun Devil Stadium, the Liquor Department or the Arizona Board of Regents," Ennis says. "I came down on the side of the regents because they bear the responsibility for whatever happens at Sun Devil Stadium." He admits some of his staff were opposed to his policy. But he defends it nevertheless by saying, "I was pursuing an agenda that the governor and the governor's closest advisers felt was a proper course, and that course was allowing the Board of Regents to decide on what went on in Sun Devil Stadium."

But members of the public complained to the Attorney General's Office and the Liquor Department. This brought Liquor Department investigators Dirk Brown and Richard Gilchrest to the skyboxes early in the Phoenix Cardinals' 1989 season. In October, they completed their investigation and filed a report that documented the Ennis-ASU negotiations. What's more, Brown and Gilchrest said that booze in the skyboxes resulted in a slew of liquor-law violations by ASU.

Ennis and Jonovich responded by ordering Gilchrest and Brown to continue their skybox inquiry.

"We wondered why they kept sending Dirk and Gilchrest back out to follow up on busy work, and each week there was another football game and alcohol was served in the skyboxes," says Steve Reynolds, the former investigations supervisor. "And this was after the attorney general told them it was illegal. Why didn't the superintendent give an order to cease and desist? Why didn't he do that? The AG is the main lawyer for the Liquor Department."

Ennis blames Gilchrest and Brown for the length of the investigation. "We brought it to a conclusion as quickly as we could," he says. "I'd ask a question and the investigators would come back without the answer. And I'd have to send them back out."

Instead of banning booze in the skyboxes or citing ASU for violations, Ennis ended up citing the Biltmore and Sun Devil Liquors for violating the liquor laws.

The Biltmore paid a $750 fine. A Liquor Department hearing officer fined Sun Devil Liquors $200, but Ennis raised it to $1,250. The hearing officer told Ennis he had a "bias" and asked him to withdraw the high fine. Ennis refused, but the Liquor Board reversed Ennis, saying Sun Devil Liquors was simply trying to carry out the plan devised by Ennis and ASU in the first place. Ennis called the Department of Public Safety in to investigate the mess. Eventually the DPS agreed with Gilchrest and Brown. During this time, Jonovich asked the two investigators to write a memo to explain why they thought liquor laws were being violated. In the memo, which was written in the spring of 1990, Brown emphasized Ennis' role in the mess and hinted that Ennis had needlessly extended the previous year's investigation.

Following the memo, says Reynolds, Jonovich unleashed internal investigations and there was "hell to pay."

Brown was the most vocal critic of Ennis. He also took the most heat from Jonovich's internal investigations. He was videotaped. He was followed. He was accused of falsifying his work logs, loafing on the job and of mishandling evidence by leaving a box of documents and copies on his desk and then leaving it in his car.

Ennis suggests Brown traded his badge and gun for a job as a truck driver because he couldn't face the consequences of the rigid internal investigation.

But former investigators and current employees say there was a clear pattern of harassing those who were critical of Ennis.

For instance, Ralph Robinson also strongly supported the work of Gilchrest and Brown. After the memo was written, he, too, became the subject of internal investigations that resulted in reprimands in his personnel file. At one point, in utter frustration, Robinson wrote Malody: "I am accused of misconduct of something by someone. As a result, I am the subject of an administrative internal investigation."

It turns out that Robinson was told he was being investigated because he informed investigator Liz Lenzen that she was being investigated for her mileage records. Robinson complained in a memo to Frank Malody that his only sin was that he told Lenzen "to cover her ass and take good notes."

Robinson also was punished because he and another supervisor failed to communicate over who was going to cover the office on a certain day.

"Basically, the internal investigations were started because of actual wrongdoing on the part of the employees," says Jonovich. "It had nothing to do with the skyboxes. It had to do with wrongdoing and I will not tolerate that."

Most staffers involved in the skybox probe, including Brown, Reynolds, and Robinson, have quit. In fact, the external-investigations staff has dwindled to 10 from 22 at the beginning of Ennis' regime, Reynolds says. Many quit after the barrage of internal investigations following the skybox fuss. As a result, each remaining investigator now monitors roughly 1,000 licensees throughout the state. Even for a fellow who loves "working liquor," like investigator Schrimpf--the guy who shot his gun into the office floor--this is a lot of work. Last year, Schrimpf put in 500 hours of overtime. Ennis calls the staff shrinkage "downsizing." He explains he "found some people I call `flotsam.' These are people who gravitate to state jobs that don't have a high demand for performance. We started demanding performance. There were a few who didn't like that demand for performance and they left."

Ennis suggests they left before the probes were completed so they wouldn't have to face the consequences of their actions. He says none were singled out for harassment, and all were treated fairly.

IN THE WAKE of the internal-investigations spree, careers were ruined. Letters of discipline marred otherwise perfect files. Several top-level investigators who quit, including supervisors Tom Kuhn and Ralph Robinson, have lost years of seniority and are now working at low-level jobs in other state agencies.

Others, like Dirk Brown, have quit police work entirely. "This has ruined my life," says Brown from a truck stop in Oregon. Investigator Steve Reynolds was wounded by a grenade in Vietnam, and prides himself on the fact that he's always held a job despite physical complications from his injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder. Reynolds says that under Jonovich's reign, his stress disorder got worse. Eventually he checked himself into a VA hospital and has since resigned from the department. "You have no idea how vindictive these people can be," he says.

Reynolds, who was Brown's supervisor, remembers how stressful Jonovich made his last days at the department. He remembers especially one day when he and his subordinates were preparing to raid a bar with DPS. Reynolds had planned the raid for months. At the last minute, Jonovich told Reynolds, in front of his men, that he couldn't participate in the raid. He gave no reason. To this day, Reynolds remembers the humiliation.

"I loved my job," he says. "All I wanted to do was work liquor."

A whiskey-filled cop car in the office of the superintendent of Liquor Licenses and Control. Get it?

"It got so bad employees were carrying tape recorders around because they didn't trust each other."

These are the kinds of stories you might hear during a drinking bout with pals.

There was a time, for example, when the investigations unit of the Liquor Department was obsessed with sausages.

Jonovich dismisses the complaints as "typical of personnel situations."

"It took me a long time to get used to the fact that where I work now, people aren't paranoid."

"I think Hugh Ennis doesn't like me very much. I think the department likes me because I've stood up to him."

"He's going to be hysterical that I even talked to the newspaper."

Following the memo, says Reynolds, there was "hell to pay."

"I am accused of misconduct of something by someone.

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Terry Greene