Tuesday, April 4, 2017

BREAKING UPDATE: Judge Sets Emergency Hearing In Arpaio Criminal Contempt Case

(UPDATE, 3:45pm: The Department of Justice's Public Integrity Section informs Arizona's Politics that it will attend the Thursday hearing in person, rather than by telephone.)

Outgoing and incoming legal counsel for former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio are ordered to appear personally at an emergency hearing this Thursday afternoon.  U.S. District Court Judge Susan Bolton issued the order this afternoon, after lead counsel A. Melvin McDonald told the Court last night that he needed to withdraw three weeks before the criminal contempt trial. (The Order is published below.)

The prosecuting attorneys for the Department of Justice are permitted to phone in for the accelerated hearing. However, a spokesperson for the DOJ's Public Integrity Section informed Arizona's Politics this evening that they will be in the courtroom. (And/or in the Judge's chambers, if necessary.)

Arizona's Politics reported yesterday on the surprise 11th hour withdrawal application. The Arizona Republic followed up with some possible insights into what may have prompted the ethical quandary that former U.S. Attorney McDonald and the Jones, Skelton & Hochuli firm found themselves in.

If the withdrawal is permitted, Mark Goldman (Goldman & Zwillinger) will become Arpaio's lead counsel. Goldman unsuccessfully asked that the trial be continued due to his son's Bar Mitzvah taking place the following weekend.

Late last night, McDonald filed witness and exhibit lists (subject to change by Goldman), showing eight possible defense witnesses in the April 25 trial. Those witnesses are Russ Skinner, Jerry Sheridan, Former Chief Brian Sands, Lt. Joseph Sousa, Chief Jack MacIntyre, Lisa Allen, Lt. Brian Jakowinicz and Brett Palmer.

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