Bill Richardson Takes DPS to Task for Baseball-Tickets Scandal and Other Possible Signs of a "Failed Agency"
Above: The game-day TV screen shot that sparked the investigation of Hegarty. Below: The check Hegarty claimed paid for the tickets. It was cashed by the Arizona Trucking Association a month after the baseball game, and after Hegarty knew he'd be investigated
In a column today in the East Valley Tribune, former police officer Bill Richardson takes the Arizona Department of Public Safety to task for a baseball-ticket scandal and other possible signs of a failed agency.
New Times broke the story last December of the investigation into the DPS' former No. 2 guy, Jack Hegarty, for allegedly taking baseball tickets from the trucking industry. We followed that up last week with a feature article detailing the cozy relationship between DPS higher-ups and the Arizona Trucking Association. The ATA had been treating DPS commercial-vehicle enforcement supervisors including Hegarty to primo seats at Arizona Diamondbacks games, our investigation showed, and Hegarty -- with approval from DPS Director Robert Halliday -- banned most highway patrol officers from stopping commercial vehicles unless they had suspicion of a traffic violation.
Hegarty, during the internal probe into the ticket scandal that preceded his unexpected retirement in January, complained that he was being treated unfairly -- since Halliday took free tickets from the ATA, too.More »