PHOENIX — As Jerry Sheridan and Sheriff Penzone take the debate stage tonight, voters in Maricopa County should know that Jerry Sheridan dodged losing his peace officer certification due to having friends in high places.
On January 16, 2019, three members of the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board (AZPOST) decided to recuse themselves when asked to make a judgment on Jerry Sheridan’s misconduct, documented in the Melendres vs Arpaio Court findings and independent investigations.
Sheridan, while serving as Chief Deputy under Arpaio, was found in contempt of court for not following federal immigration and law enforcement guidelines mandated to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department. The Judge also found that Sheridan had a conflict of interest and was not forthcoming when one of his deputies Brian Mackiewicz was under investigation for a variety of alleged offenses.
After the designated official introduced the case to the AZPOST board, three members of the board (Chief Alan Rodbell, Colonel Frank Milstead, and Andrew LeFevre) advised that they had either a professional or friendly relationship with Sheridan and had to recuse themselves from the matter.
Upon their recusal, there was no quorum to proceed with advancing the case on whether Sheridan should lose his credentials. Twenty-one months later, no quorum has been assembled to preside over this matter and Sheridan has retained his badge. In some 170 hearings in the last 24 months, it does not appear that any other hearing received a no quorum.
Matt Grodsky, Arizona Democratic Party spokesman, issued the following statement:
“Sheridan was found in contempt of court, has used racial slurs, has a long laundry list of nefarious acts, and recently spoke at a fundraiser for a murderer. At MCSO, Jerry Sheridan oversaw a culture of corruption. Now we know that even after a federal judge exposed his misdeeds, his friends bailed him out and spared him from losing his law enforcement credentials. This isn’t a candidate, this is a crooked cop.”
Tonight’s debate airs on Arizona PBS at 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. Moderators include Ted Simons, Arizona PBS; Steve Goldstein, KJZZ; and Yvonne Wingett Sanchez, Arizona Republic.