Youthful activist and former mayoral candidate Jarrett Maupin II told a whopper of a lie about Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon to FBI agents, but a judge wants Gordon to have the last laugh.
Maupin, 22, seems to have desired revenge after his failed effort to swipe the mayor's seat from the incumbent Gordon. Maupin spread lies about Gordon's sex life to reporters and -- big mistake -- to law enforcement authorities.
In April, he pleaded guilty to making a false statement to a federal agent and was forced to resign from his elected position on the Phoenix Union High School governing board. His September 21 sentencing mandates five years' probation, a $100 "special assessment" and 75 community hours.
U.S. District Judge David G. Campbell said the victim in the case, Gordon, could decide how and where those community hours would be served.
Gordon, though, apparently believes that revenge is a dish best served... by someone else.
"We wanted to keep this out of our office," Gordon's assistant, Scott Phelps, tells New Times.
Gordon kicked the decision to the city manager's office.
"They are probably going to suggest a place where we need some manpower, like the graffiti-busters program," Phelps says. "We wanted it to be something worthwhile."
For his part, Maupin was "shocked" the judge added community service hours to his sentence. As a reverend, he says, he's been performing community service his whole life.
It's also clear that Maupin isn't comfortable with another aspect of sentence. He was compelled to repudiate the stories he told about Gordon, but Maupin says he feels like a "black Alfred Dreyfus." Dreyfus, as we just learned in a Wikipedia article, was a Jewish Frenchman falsely accused of treason in the late 19th century.
Maupin's not allowed to own firearms -- he says he's never owned one before -- but as a first offender he can apply to have his "sacred" right to vote restored, he says. He may also get the probation period reduced to three years, he adds. It could have been much worse, since his crime called for a maximum sentence of five years in prison and/or a $250,000 fine.
The young reverend says he hopes to raise enough money through his church to put him through divinity school at Harvard or Berkeley. He's not worried about his future.
"I can honestly say my soul is anchored in the Lord," Maupin says.
Anchored in honesty would be good, too.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.