Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu Quick to Point Out Gunshot Wound on Kidnapping Victim's Not Self-Inflicted; We've Heard That Before

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Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu
We were hit with a case of de ja vu this morning when we read a press release from the Pinal County Sheriff's Office about a pair of illegal immigrants who were kidnapped and left in the desert, with one of the victims getting shot.

The story itself isn't what jarred our memory, it was a quote from Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu regarding self-inflicted gunshot wounds.

According to the Sheriff's Office, a deputy was flagged down by two men on Interstate 8 about 2:30 a.m. on Monday.


The men, Isvan Tohala-Lopez, 21, and Fernando Lopez-Morales, 27, are  undocumented but have been in the United States for about six years.

 

They told the deputy they were kidnapped, robbed, and assaulted by four or five unknown Hispanic men in a late-model black Cadillac Escalade near 35th Avenue and Buckeye Road in Phoenix at 3 p.m. Sunday.

The kidnappers demanded $3,500 to release the two but neither of the men had any money. They were held at a house in Phoenix until late in the evening, when they were blindfolded and driven into the desert.

The vehicle the men were in stopped briefly, and Lopez and Morales opened the door and started to run.

The kidnappers started shooting and hit Lopez twice in the back.

"Even though there are no witnesses and no suspects are in custody, we do not believe the injuries sustained by Mr. Lopez are either self-inflicted or from a gun fired in close contact," Babeu -- out of nowhere -- says in his press release.

Um, nobody said they were. We've also heard that before -- something on your mind, Paul?

The two admitted to officers that they were undocumented and say they have no idea why they were targeted.

We have an idea.

What this really sounds like is what our colleague Monica Alonzo reported about earlier this year -- coyotes kidnapping Mexicans and holding them for ransom when members of their Mexican cargo manage to escape. The coyotes are prone to grabbing anybody with brown skin off the street to keep their overlords happy -- you know, gotta replace misplaced merchandise (or else).

Lopez was taken to the Maricopa Medical Center in serious condition.

Anyone with information about the kidnapping is asked to call either the Phoenix Police Department or the Pinal County Sheriff's Office.

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8 comments
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Gerry_C
Gerry_C

Why on Earth would he say that if they did not suspect that they were self-inflicted or from a proximal firearm.

The second question is ... Does Pinal County have an expert that can identify contact or proximal shot characteristics? How does Babeu know his statement to be accurate?

The Monster
The Monster

Babeu is an assets to the Mexican Mafia. They would not touch a hair on his head...iif he had any. Babeu's lifestyle make him vulnerable to blackmail. Mexican Mafia has offered to provide close security detail for their Sheriff. They don't want anyone to harm him. He is to valuable to our foreign enemies. The only harm to Babeu, is Babeu himself. He will be exposed for what he is.

Helen
Helen

Once more, consider these two suggested changes of policy for the Pinal County's Sheriff Department. This will eliminate any conflict or suggestion of impropiety between Pinal County Deputies and individuals wanting to walk across the Pinal county desert enroute to Phoenix.

#1 Do not stop, question, or interfere with individuals carrrying large backpacks as they journey to Phoenix. This policy has the added benefit of preventing the possibility of racial profiling.

#2 To the Search and Rescue Deputies, discontinue assisting individuals that might be in physical distress. It is their right to take a walk across the desert to Phoenix without being impeded .

Based upon Rubin's article and the comments from the good citizens of Phoenix about the harsh behaviour of the Pinal Sheriff's department in an effort to prevent the abundant and steady supply of "cargo", individuals should be allowed to walk to Phoenix and join the society. Based on their strongly expressed criticims, the citizens of Phoenix are anxious to welcome these newcomers.

The journey of these individual's should not be called into question. Our Federal government has repeatedly reassured the citizens of Arizona that they have secured our southern international border and we have nothing to be concerned about.

These changes should eliminate any resentment from the citizens of Phoenix towards the Pinal County Sheriff's department.The new residents and "cargo" ahould arrive without any interference from law enforcement.

Hopefully, this will please the good citizens of Phoenix and eliminate their resentment of the Pinal County Sheriff Department.

Thruth
Thruth

For God sakes folks of Pinal County. How long are you going to let Sheriff Baboon turn your sheriff's office into a Jr Arapio office. Get your recall petitions out and circulating. This guy is a total goof.

Hike222
Hike222

Do you think this was something the sheriff did to try proving his own case? Gosh I sure he isn't shooting people, but who knows with him.

Theoldman
Theoldman

I guess I would have to ask the sheriff, how would you know for sure? You seemed to have guessed wrong when your deputy got shot.

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

Weak, sheriff. Very weak. Grasping at straws..

Truth08
Truth08

Trying to spin-it-off in another direction??

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