UPDATE, September 2015: A Virginia woman has come forward publicly to reveal herself as the 15-year-old girl with whom former Phoenix Suns superstar Kevin Johnson had an allegedly inappropriate physical relationship 20 years ago, a scandal New Times covered in an exclusive series of articles by Paul Rubin. Today, Mandi Koba, now 36, describes how Johnson, now mayor of Sacramento, and his agents paid her $230,000 to keep quiet in 1997, after the incidents surfaced. She describes in a Deadspin article how allegedly protecting Johnson through the years affected her emotionally and that, no matter the consequences, she feels that she must tell her story.
We've always enjoyed a good relationship with former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods, except when he got pissy with us for a long while over the infamous "hot dog vendor" spoof back in the day.
Woods is a savvy and funny guy, something in fairly short supply among the legal beagles with whom we converse on a daily basis. He's smart, too.
Beyond his law practice these days, Woods has started a radio show, available on the Internet at GrantWoods.com. It has its moments, and we wish him well with the venture.
The ex-AG's press release on this week's show pimps his interview with onetime Phoenix Suns great Kevin Johnson (that's K.J. in the photo, replicating the classic Michael Jordan tongue trick).
Johnson's now mayor of Sacramento.
He's supposed to discuss his first months in office, as well as to regale listeners about the "good old days" in Phoenix, when he was an All-Star point guard who occasionally slammed a monster dunk over a player a foot or more taller than him.
Just for shits and giggles, we're willing to wager that Woods doesn't ask K.J. about the case that altered his previously squeaky-clean public perception in these parts. To the chagrin of almost everyone, we exposed that sordid story of inappropriate behavior with a teenage girl more than a decade ago in our paper.
The unpleasant details re-emerged last year during Johnson's winning campaign for mayor of California's capital city — which he won in a runoff against an extremely weak incumbent. Though old Number 7's people threatened to sue us after the story ran, cooler heads prevailed and the case and its troubling underlying issues eventually went away.
Though Grant Woods never has shied from controversy, he'll surely pass the ball on revisiting this one, right?
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.