Mitchell Won’t Back Away From Hobbs Group Home Investigation

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Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell has no plans to stand down after Attorney General Kris Mayes requested that there only be one investigation into the Hobbs administration’s “pay to play” scheme allegations.

Sunshine Residential Homes gave nearly $400,000 to Hobbs and the state Democratic Party, and it was one of the group home operators with contracts with the state that received a substantial increase in its daily per child pay rate, roughly 60%, by the Department of Child Safety, the Arizona Republic reported. Mayes has already opened an investigation following a request by Senate President Pro Tempore T.J. Shope, but Mitchell is also planning to assist the Auditor General’s office after they reached out to Mitchell.

“We will prosecute it as well if that is where the evidence leads,” Mitchell wrote on Tuesday to Mayes.

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“I agree with you that two simultaneous investigations could have a negative impact,” she added. “Therefore, I am asking that you not complicate an already complex investigation by duplicating efforts.”

She also noted the letter from Treasurer Kimberly Yee and Rep. David Livingston expressing opposition to an investigation by Mayes, saying that her “office is charged with representing state government, including those offices and agencies implicated here, and raises the specter of a conflict of interest.”

As for the governor herself, she did not answer questions on the matter at a media availability, The Center Square reported.

On Monday, the Attorney General’s office said they were done commenting and suggested critics are playing politics with the situation.

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“Ongoing attempts to discredit the Attorney General’s Office’s ability to conduct thorough and professional investigations are nothing more than partisan stunts and insulting to the career law enforcement agents and prosecutors who have sworn oaths to uphold the laws of our state. Our office will have no additional comments to make on this ongoing investigation,” Mayes’ communications director, Richie Taylor, wrote in an email to reporters.

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This article was published by The Center Square and is reproduced with permission.

Image Credit: Cameron Arcand and The Center Square

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