Don Stapley, Mary Rose Wilcox to Meet With Citizens' Group Tomorrow in Supervisors' Auditorium

Randy Parraz

Critics of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio will have the chance to air their grievances tomorrow before County Supervisors Don Stapley and Mary Rose Wilcox.

Stapley and Wilcox, still fresh from their recent victories over attempts by Arpaio and County Attorney Andrew Thomas to prosecute them, will meet with members of the Maricopa County Safety and Accountability group at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, said county spokeswoman Cari Gerchick.

The get-together will take place in the Supes' auditorium, 200 West Jefferson Street, but it won't be an official meeting of Supervisors.



A news release from the county doesn't state what will be discussed, but the MCSA has in the past demanded that County Supervisors use their power -- especially their control of financial matters -- to stop the sheriff's alleged civil rights abuses.

One of the group's key figures, labor union organizer Randy Parraz, caused the Sheriff's Office to prove the group's point after he and four other MCSA members were arrested in 2008 on trumped-up charges of trespassing. Parraz and the others were later acquitted and recovered their attorney's fees.

The 2008 squabble occurred out of frustration: The Board of Supervisors, led by then-Chairman Andy Kunasek, had refused to put the MCSA on the agenda for public meetings. (The group did speak at various meetings during the time set for public comments).

Stapley, the current chairman and no fan of Sheriff Arpaio anymore, is suing the county, the sheriff and the county attorney for false arrest and malicious prosecution, among other things. The stout legal defense of Wilcox in her own criminal case led to the charges getting dropped
against her and Stapley.

Parraz and the MCSA could scarcely find more sympathetic ears.

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