By Ray Stern
As predicted in this blog, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office decided Deputy Jesus Cosme did not commit racial profiling in a traffic stop described by the East Valley Tribune.
Oddly, the Tribune still hasn't written about the investigation of Cosme, which was sparked by the Trib's own five-day series. New Times learned of the investigation of Cosme after it was leaked by unnamed Tribbers, and broke the story here. Columnist E.J. Montini wrote an article in today's Arizona Republic that paraphrased Brian Sands, chief of enforcement for the sheriff's office, as saying "the sheriff's office has investigated the incident as it was reported and that the deputies have been exonerated."
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According to Montini's column, Sands test-drove a blatant lie about the incident, which E.J. caught quickly:
“The reporter was either asleep at the wheel, so to speak, or he made misstatements or lies,” Sands told me. “A certain series of events can happen and you can mischaracterize it. You know that, E.J. He wasn't even near the scene when the actual occurrence happened”
But the article indicated that the reporter was in the car with the detective.
New Times made a public records request on August 4 for the investigative report on Cosme, but the office hasn't released it yet. If Sands' comments to Montini are any guide, the report ought to make for interesting reading.