Jan Brewer, Charles Ryan, and Private Prison Industry on Blast by Prison Legal News Writer, ADC Prisoner Joe Watson

In July's Prison Legal News, Watson lambastes Brewer and Ryan . . .

Who better than a prisoner to criticize Arizona's prison system?

The most recent issue of Prison Legal News, a monthly magazine largely written for prisoners by prisoners, features a long, detailed overview of what's wrong with the Arizona Department of Corrections, including ADC's alarming suicide rate, its excessive use of solitary confinement, the push for privatization by Governor Jan Brewer and ADC Director Charles Ryan, Brewer's "stingy" clemency policy, and the ACLU's current lawsuit over the ADC's failure to provide adequate medical care to the incarcerated.

The piece draws liberally from information already published in various media outlets and reports by watchdog groups. Much of it is familiar, but the article does put it all in one place and punctuates it with stinging commentary provided by a prisoner currently serving a 12-year sentence in ADC for a string of armed robberies.

In fact, his name may be familiar to readers of this paper: Joe Watson, the so-called "Salon Bandit."

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Joe Arpaio's Ex-Chief Deputy David Hendershott Now Selling Real Estate

Is it just me, or does it look like Hendy's had some work done around his eyes?

As the saying goes, would you buy a used car from this guy?

Or more to the point, a used home?

The "guy" in question, as you can see in the pic above, is Sheriff Joe Arpaio's fired, disgraced ex-top flunky David Hendershott, once the most feared man in Maricopa County.

(Note: There's a better, in-color version of the same photo on Hendy's Facebook page, for as long as that lasts.)

Currently, Arpaio's former enforcer is hawking real estate for Russ Lyon Sotheby's International Realty, which bills itself as "Arizona's legendary real estate icon," and claims to employ "nearly 800 agents serving the Scottsdale and Phoenix metropolitan areas as well as Flagstaff, Prescott, Sedona, and Payson."

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Joe Arpaio Arrests Four Cleaning Ladies in 74th Immigration Raid

Four cleaning ladies, workers for Pro-Serv, captured in MCSO's Thursday night raid...

One week away from a major filing in the ACLU civil rights case Melendres v. Arpaio, the MCSO performed its 74th worksite immigration raid on the Phoenix commercial cleaning service Pro-Serv, arresting four female employees Thursday evening.

MCSO spokesman Chris Hegstrom issued the following statement in response to repeated requests from the media:

"Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio can confirm that search warrants were served on Pro-Serve [sic] Commercial Cleaning, a janitorial service company that employs hundreds of workers who provide cleaning services to over a hundred locations throughout the greater metro area.

"Arpaio says four female employees have been taken into custody for ID theft/forgery so far and the investigation is continuing. No further comment can be made at this time."

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Tom Horne's Alleged Mistress Admits Leaving AG Office to Save Horne's Tuchis, and Dennis Wilenchik's Son Runs for State House

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AG Horne: Will the GOPers be stuck with this guy come 2014? Democrat Felecia Rotellini sure hopes so . . .

Consider the following a confirmation of the obvious: an e-mail from Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne's alleged mistress, Carmen Chenal, wherein she confesses her motivation for resigning her $108,000 post at the AG's Office.

"I need to leave here," she writes in a May 24 e-mail, forwarded to Horne's gmail account, "because although I have A+ evaluations here, the false allegations out in the media are hurting Tom politically -- being on the AG's payroll is a negative for him politically."

See, in 2011, Chenal followed Horne from the Arizona Department of Education, where then-Superintendent Horne had scored her a position she was unqualified for, to the AG's Office, where Horne got her a far more prestigious, better-paying gig that she was unqualified for.

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Bill Montgomery's Plot to Silence Mary Rose Wilcox Scores a Win

Dennis Gilman
Who's afraid of Mary Rose Wilcox? Well, Monty, to begin with...

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery's crusade to silence county Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox on the Melendres case scored a win Thursday, with a superior court judge declining to weigh in on Monty's argument that Wilcox has a conflict of interest regarding the federal civil rights lawsuit.

In a minute entry dated August 1, Judge Dean Fink granted the county attorney's motion to dismiss the matter, finding that the court did not have the authority to issue the sort of opinion Wilcox's lawyers were seeking.

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Debra Milke's Judge Says Ex-Cop Armando Saldate's Credibility at Issue, Bond Hearing Delayed Till August 30

pool photo by Ross Franklin of the Associated Press
Milke at Thursday's hearing before Judge Mroz...

After 23 years on death row, Debra Milke will have to wait at least another month to learn if she is eligible for bail, pending retrial for the 1989 murder of her four year-old son Christopher.

Thursday afternoon, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Rosa Mroz set August 30 as the new date for a bond hearing, stating that so much had transpired since Milke's 1990 conviction, a so-called "Simpson hearing" was necessary.

"I don't believe the court has a choice," Mroz said at one point, disagreeing with the prosecution's argument that Milke's indictment and denial of bail of more than two decades ago should stand.

Rather, Mroz concurred with the defense that whether Milke is granted bail hinges on the testimony of lying ex-Phoenix cop Armando Saldate, the only witness to Milke's "confession," which was not recorded or properly documented.

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Bill Montgomery Opposes Ethics Rule Requiring Prosecutors to Reveal Evidence of Wrongful Convictions

Monty's against requiring prosecutors to reveal new evidence of a convict's innocence . . .

As Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery fights to keep Debra Milke behind bars pending a retrial on her overturned murder conviction, he also is fighting a proposed rule to the State Bar of Arizona that would require prosecutors to act on new evidence of a wrongful conviction.

For the past two years, the Arizona Justice Project has petitioned the Arizona Supreme Court to change the State Bar of Arizona's ethics rules, adding a provision based on the American Bar Association's Ethical Rule 3.8.

The ABA's rule states that if a prosecutor discovers "new, credible, and material evidence" of a wrongful conviction, he or she must disclose the evidence to the defendant and "undertake further investigation or make reasonable efforts to cause an investigation, to determine whether the defendant was convicted of an offense that the defendant did not commit."

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Debra Milke's Attorney Asks Court to Disqualify Bill Montgomery's Office as Prosecutor

Milke, whose Simpson hearing on a request for bail is scheduled for Thursday...

The lawyer for Debra Milke, whose 1990 murder conviction was overturned earlier this year by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, is asking the court to disqualify Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery's office from being the prosecuting agency in the case.

On the eve of an August 1, hearing on whether or not Milke will be granted bail pending her new trial, her attorney Michael Kimerer filed a motion, arguing that MCAO prosecutors have a conflict of interest, "created by their own misconduct in this case, and the significant political, public and financial interest they have in the outcome of this case."

Kimerer accuses Montgomery of choosing to "embrace" and "validate" the tainted testimony of lying ex-Phoenix Police Detective Armando Saldate, whose account of Milke's unrecorded, undocumented, so-called confession is the only direct "evidence" against Milke in the murder of her four year-old son Christopher.

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SB 1070's Third Anniversary: Arizona's War on the Brown Continues

Anti-SB 1070 demonstrators, arriving at Phoenix's ICE offices this morning

Though it feels like a decade or more, it's only been three years since Senate Bill 1070, Arizona's ethnic cleansing legislation, went into effect, stoking the fires of ethnic discord, clobbering an already weak state economy, and putting Sand Land in the running for the most racist state west of the Mississippi, if not the entire Union.

This morning, the civil rights group Puente led a march from Steele Indian School Park to the offices of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Central Avenue, near McDowell Road. The demonstration was both a protest of the nefarious effects of the statute, as well as a rally marking three years of resistance to 1070 by Latinos and their allies.

Around 200 demonstrators carried signs demanding an end to the Obama administration's deportations and the militarization of the U.S.-Mexico border. They chanted, "Stop 1070/We will not comply," and, "Being brown is not a crime," and peacefully assembled before the ICE building following the march.

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Joe Arpaio's Uncle Sam's Raids: Video by Dennis Gilman

Talking to one of the Uncle Sam's workers in a still from Gilman's video, which you can watch in full below

As promised in a previous blog post, here's videographer Dennis Gilman's take on Sheriff Joe Arpaio's anti-immigration worksite raids on two locations of the local Uncle Sam's restaurant chain.

The video includes interviews we did with two of the workers arrested by the MCSO. These were two of five men, against whom the Maricopa County Attorney's Office ultimately decided not to pursue charges.

Those five men were turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which subsequently released them with pending immigration hearings.

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