Putting on Heirs
Some politicos have scratched their heads over the hubris of Governor J. Fife Symington III's bankruptcy. Why would an ambitious man like the Fifester--anascent nova in the national firmament of states'-rights space cadets--run his political career aground in such a public way?

Well, the bean-counters tell The Flash there could be a perfectly plausible, if somewhat speculative, explanation: raw greed.

The Fifester stands to inherit a share of the estate of his 77-year-old mother, Martha Frick Symington, whose wealth is reported to be vast and whose health is reported to be fragile.

Bankruptcy experts say that if MFS were to pass on within six months of the September 20 filing of the Fifester's bankruptcy petition, everything in excess of $20,000 that the governor inherits could be fair game for creditors. By all accounts, that inheritance will be substantially greater than $20,000.

Conspiracy buffs speculate that Fife wants to clear the decks so the Frick fortune doesn't fall into the wrong hands.

Given that, they say, it seems a messy bankruptcy was an easy call for the Fifester, who would probably much rather be frickin' rich than popular.

Royally Screwed?
A Valley woman has accused a Saudi Arabian--a friend of the Saudi royal family--of rape, according to a Paradise Valley Police Department report. The assault allegedly occurred at a resort on August 21.

Members of the Saudi royal family have lived in Paradise Valley for about a year, where a member has been recovering from surgery at Phoenix's Barrow Neurological Institute.

The police report is being reviewed by the Maricopa County Attorney's Office. Suffice it to say that the woman's account is not the stuff of easy convictions. It's a classic case of she-says, he-says: She says she never consented to sex. He says she did. She says the man raped her three times. He says they had sex four times. Prosecutors can't be pleased that the woman remained in the man's room for 12 hours and endured at least three alleged assaults, falling asleep between encounters, phoning friends without mentioning her predicament and making no apparent attempt to escape the hotel room.Still, she insists she told her attacker "no." The accused assailant is cooperating with investigators.

The most interesting passage in the police report comes when the cops notify the royal entourage of the allegation against a friend of the family. One PV officer reports that a member of the security team guarding the royal family "asked me if in my opinion this alleged incident was some type of attempt on the part of the victim to profit financially from the Saudis. He further advised that if in fact it was, that they [Saudis] were willing to pay the victim to avoid any type of adverse media coverage or publicity. I advised [security officer] in no uncertain terms that this incident would be treated as a bona fide sexual assault and investigated thoroughly, and that PVPD would not be party to any type of financial agreement between the Saudis and the victim."

To her credit, the woman apparently has made no requests for compensation.

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