What a relief it was to remove Sherriff Joe from office. He was outwardly corrupt, unfair, and often rude. As Paul Penzone took office, it was as if justice was now assured. However, once the dust settled from the election and hype, it became obvious that not only does Paul Penzone not know what he's doing, but the Maricopa County Sherriff's Department has gone completely rogue in the process.
Recently my friend, Michelle, found herself in a legal situation when Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department turned a victim into a criminal, all in an effort to cover the lack of guidance and leadership the Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department now faces.
Like most things, it began simply. She placed an ad for a roommate, and 2-weeks later the new roommate moved in. It didn't take long for Michelle to realize that the new roommate, Crystal, was an actual kleptomaniac. When Michelle noticed items missing from around the house, as well as a variety of stolen computers and credit cards, she immediately threw Crystal out.
Crystal, in a panic that her kleptomania should be discovered, called the Sherriff's department and claimed that Michelle had assaulted her. Although there were no witnesses and no evidence to confirm the assault, Paul Penzone's Sherriff's Department went ahead and charged Michelle, after becoming aware of the stolen property Crystal had collected.
Although Michelle declared her innocence and had a witness to state the stolen items were Crystal's and no assault had occurred, the Paul Penzone Sherriff's department forced Michelle to gather the stolen items (while handcuffed) and return them to Crystal.
Now supported by the Paul Penzone Sheriff's Department, Crystal went on to file a Protection Order against Michelle, then proceeded to break into her house and text threats. Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department looked the other way.
When Crystal used stolen Arizona State Unemployment funds to fill the prescriptions she had lifted from Michelle's wallet, Detective Jones with the Mesa Police Department didn't file the proper paperwork, ignored the offense, and returned Michelle to the Sherriff's Department to settle the matter. Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department, again, looked the other way.
When Michelle and her witness fought the Protection Order, the judge said "I see why you threw her out. I see no assault occurred, but you can't text to Crystal indicating she is violating her Protection Order against you, even if it is to protect yourself and prove that she is the violent criminal and you are not, therefore the Protection Order stands and you are in trouble".
When the Maricopa County D.A. became aware that Crystal had a pattern of criminal behavior of this kind, they stated an investigation would occur - no calls were made, no follow-up was done, no investigation occurred. In fact, the D.A. insisted that the camera footage of Crystal's exodus from Michelle's house would be requested. However, Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department turned off their cameras during the event. `Therefore, the D.A. threw up their hands and pretended that Michelle witnesses didn't exist, the recorded threats never happened, and Crystal's criminal behavior would fall on someone else because Michelle was the easier target.
Michelle is innocent of all charges and has proven that repeatedly, but Sherriff Joe's shadow is large, lengthy, and strong. Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department can't admit they are failing under the new leadership, so innocent people go jail while the criminals continue to go free and protected under Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department.
If you think that this is an isolated case, think again. It is only a matter of time before Paul Penzone's Sheriff's Department looks the other way as you find your homes destroyed by theft and your husband, wife, and children charged for the assault.
For more information regarding Michelle's case, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org