Maricopa County Attorney Adel to go on leave to address health problems
Sep 10, 2021, 2:46 PM
PHOENIX — Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel announced Friday she would go on leave to address several health problems.
Adel, in a statement, said she was seeking treatment for anxiety and “unhealthy coping behaviors,” including an eating disorder and alcohol use.
Adel said she would remain in daily contact with her leadership team during her absence.
“For most, this is a private journey but as an elected official I know I am held to a different standard,” Adel said. “At this time, I ask for patience as I seek to better myself for my family, my friends and our community.”
Adel’s announcement comes after a tumultuous year for the Republican.
She was hospitalized for a brain injury on Election Day in November 2020 after she fell at home, according to her office.
She underwent emergency surgery for bleeding in the brain and has since been recovering.
Adel defeated Democratic challenger Julie Gunnigle in the 2020 election to retain her position after she was appointed to replace Bill Montgomery, who left for a seat on the state Supreme Court.
“I know that if I am to be successful in my recovery, I must be honest and hold myself accountable,” Adel said. “I have a challenging journey ahead to do better and be better for my friends, family, staff, this community and ultimately myself.
“I hope that you will find it in your hearts to give me the opportunity.”
In June, Adel’s office filed a motion to dismiss all charges without prejudice that accused protesters of being gang members during an October event last year.
Phoenix police and MCAO prosecutors told a grand jury the protesters met the definition of a criminal street gang because they wore mostly black, carried umbrellas and chanted “All Cops are Bastards,” according to court records obtained by ABC15’s Dave Biscobing.
Prosecutors also testified the protesters could be compared to gangs such as the Bloods, Crips and Hells Angels, Biscobing said in his report.
A week before Adel’s office filed the motion, a judge dismissed the charges with prejudice — meaning prosecutors could refile charges — and called out officials for their “absurd,” “baffling,” and “disingenuous” conduct, according to Biscobing.