When he wore a Phoenix Suns uniform, Jerrod Mustaf did next to nothing. Off the court, however, he was quite a scorer.
Mustaf remains a suspect in an ongoing investigation into the murder of Althea Hayes, who was pregnant with his child when she was fatally shot in 1994. Mustaf's cousin LaVonnie Wooten was convicted of first-degree murder in Hayes' death.
Last week, a Valley woman sued Mustaf in Maricopa County Superior Court, seeking financial support for her 2-year-old daughter. Court papers filed by La Shea Evans say she bore the child, Amira Kadeja Ali Mustaf-Evans, in August 1994. That would have been three months after Hayes was murdered, and just weeks before the Suns reportedly paid Mustaf $2.5 million to go away forever.
News that Mustaf is a murder suspect apparently hadn't reached NBA officials in Seattle or Charlotte. Both franchises gave Mustaf tryouts during training camp. He failed to make either team. No word yet on whether any Seattle-ites or Charlottans are claiming they were impregnated by Mustaf during camp.
In the meantime, perhaps the Suns should take a serious look at Mustaf; they could use a big man who doesn't have to tip rebounds to himself.
The December issue of George magazine contains a run-down of wacky sex laws from across this great land. Arizona makes the grade for its novel statute on bestiality. "In Arizona, it is illegal only if done in the presence of someone who would be offended by it," George reports.
The Flash dashed to his Arizona Revised Statutes to check it out. Sure enough, statute 13-1403 reads:
"A person commits public sexual indecency by intentionally or knowingly engaging in any of the following acts, if another person is present, and the defendant is reckless about whether such other person, as a reasonable person, would be offended or alarmed by the act:
". . . 4. An act involving contact between the person's mouth, vulva or genitals and the anus or genitals of an animal."
So this is a cautionary note. If you're going to screw the pooch, be VERY, VERY careful about the people you're hanging around with.
The Flash's nomination for Scariest Public Official goes to Arizona Department of Corrections Director Terry Stewart. During a November 7 meeting of the governor's Public Records Task Force, Stewart demonstrated why he's a favorite of Governor J. Fife Symington III: He's smart, he's in your face and he has utter contempt for the public he is supposed to serve.
Stewart is one of the driving forces behind creation of the Task Force, a poorly disguised attempt to strip citizens' rights to records they own. As the Task Force discussed what constitutes "reasonable" time for a public agency to respond to a records request, Stewart piped right up.
"My rule is, take me to court," he gloated, adding that once a member of the public has sued his agency, he would "demonstrate when I get to court that my effort was reasonable."
Court High Jinks Mafioso Much Fun
The November 1 swearing-in ceremony for new state Court of Appeals Judge Mike Ryan included a surprise blast from his--and Arizona's--past. An unexpected guest appeared via a tape recording that startled the packed house.
"Hello, Your Honor," said a male voice dripping with Brooklynese. "This is Tony Vincent speaking to you. If you need anything, I want you to know who some of my associates are, so you can reach out for them."
The spectators paused a moment, then most of them roared with laughter. Ryan, a circumspect, sober gentleman (at least in public), shook his head and smiled.
You remember AzScam, the early 1990s videotaped sting that saw alleged heavy-hitting Vegas wiseguy "Tony Vincent" lure Arizona legislators and others with money and other inducements. "Vincent" actually was Joe Stedino, for whom the Vegas wiseguy role (if not the heavy-hitter label) was second nature. Stedino's undercover work with cops and prosecutors landed him in Ryan's courtroom for months as the key witness against the disgraced lawmakers and others.
Stedino has cancer, and on the tape his voice sounds tired and raspy. But he couldn't pass up a chance to give Ryan the names of a few family contacts:
"Now, in Mesa, we've got Jimmy Keppelini. He's a good man, you can trust him. He'll do business. Tall fellow with mustache. Good-lookin' guy. And he knows a bit about real estate. You can contact Keppelini direct and just use my name.
"If you need anything at the County Attorney's Office, we've got Paul Ahlernello. He's kind of our guy in there, and he does business. You can talk to Paul if you need to.
"For anything major, you can contact Rick 'The Toothbrush' Romleynelli. Don't be afraid to use my name, you know what I'm saying.
"If you need some extra green or if you want to take a trip or something, these are the guys I'd recommend that you'd talk to. Whatever you do, don't talk on the phone. Let them know you want to have a sit-down. I would advise against going to their office."
For the record, "Keppelini" is a.k.a. Jim Keppel, AzScam case prosecutor and now a Maricopa County Superior Court judge. "Ahlernello" is a.k.a. Maricopa County attorney chief deputy Paul Ahler, another AzScam prosecutor. And, of course, "Romleynelli" is a.k.a. County Attorney Rick Romley--the nickname refers to the time during AzScam that Judge Ryan threatened to hold Romley in contempt of court and warned him to keep his toothbrush handy, because he might be going to jail.
What's the Word? Thunderbird.
What can we learn from Dan Quayle?
If you're a student at American Graduate School of International Management, you may be able to pick up a thing or two on "international political matters" from the 44th vice president of the United States. Come spring semester, the new Paradise Valley homeboy will join the faculty as Distinguished Visiting Professor of International Studies (course name: Fabulous Foreign Golf Courses I Have Played).
Last week, Quayle visited the AGSIM campus--affectionately known as Thunderbird--to announce his new place in academia to the world, which amounted to roughly four journalists. Back in the good old days, Danny boy used to command media attention, even if it was only in the hope that he might say something stupid. No such luck these days.
But maybe that was because no one could think of anything to ask him. Quayle did reveal that he would not run for governor, stating that the only office he would consider would be that of president. So we have that to look forward to.
Feed The Flash: voice, 229-8486; fax, 340-8806; online, [email protected]