Maricopa County Attorneys Debate

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Published Oct 10, 2020, 11:00 AM

The Think Tank with Mike O'Neil

Hosted by KTAR political analyst, Dr. Mike O'Neil, 'The Think Tank' aspires to bring together some of the state's most interesting, thoughtful and inf 
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Maricopa County Attorney Debate

The county attorney is arguably the most important position in the entire criminal justice system.

  • Judges can only preside over cases that are brought to them. And if someone is convicted of a crime, there are mandatory sentence guidelines that constrain what sentences Judges may impose.
  • Defense attorneys have to defend their clients whether they think they are guilty or innocent. That is not a bad thing: it is their job and it is important, but it constrains their impact.
  • When a police officer arrests someone it is up to the County Attorney to decide whether to prosecute or drop a case, whether to send the defendant into some sort of diversion program, and exactly what to charge. That is a huge amount of discretionary power. Charges for many offenses can vary greatly with wide differences in penalties.
  • And most crimes in Arizona, particularly violent crimes, are handled by the County Attorneys, not by the Arizona Attorney General.

This is a very important job.

Our guests in this week’s Think Tank are the two candidates for Maricopa County Attorney.

  • The current county attorney, Allister Adel was appointed to the position late last year when her predecessor was appointed to the Arizona Supreme Court.
  • Her challenger is Julie Gunnigle.

Their debate is the subject of this week’s Think Tank.  We ran over in time, so their closing statement are on the web at www.KTAR.com

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  1. The Think Tank with Mike O'Neil

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The Think Tank with Mike O'Neil

Hosted by KTAR political analyst, Dr. Mike O'Neil, 'The Think Tank' aspires to bring together some o 
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