PHOENIX — A Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office deputy is still on the job while the County Attorney’s Office decides whether he should be charged with manslaughter.
Meanwhile, Sheriff Joe Arpaio said he’s planning his own internal investigation into the actions of Deputy Sean Pearce but did not say when that would begin.
Glendale police say that on Dec. 16, 2013, Pearce was driving a Chevy Tahoe 81 mph, which is twice the posted speed limit, when it struck a car near 59th Avenue and Northern. The driver of the car, 63-year-old Army veteran John Harding, was killed in the crash.
Pearce claims he was chasing a murder suspect at the time and that his Tahoe did not have lights and sirens in the car.
“He was not arrested,” Arpaio said. “This is an investigation by the Glendale police, who turned it over to the County Attorney. It will be up to the County Attorney to make a decision on any charges.”
Arpaio said that Pearce is devastated by the accident. He added that Pearce has a great record as a deputy.
“He’s been on the job for 21 years. (He’s) dedicated,” Arpaio said. “No blemish on his record. He was shot and almost killed by a violent criminal.”
Pearce is the son of former Arizona Senate President Russell Pearce, a longtime Arpaio ally. Arpaio said that despite the relationship, he’s not showing favoritism or playing politics.
“If anybody wants to go after him, me or the County Attorney for political reasons…it’s not fair. This has nothing to do with politics,” said Arpaio.
Russell Pearce is also a supporter of Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food