Maricopa County Sheriff Penzone says election security plan will go up ‘notch’ in fall

Aug 12, 2022, 4:15 AM

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)...

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

PHOENIX – Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone said after a successful security undertaking in the primary his office will use much the same plan in the general election.

For the most part, he told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News on Thursday, election workers were able to go about their business without incident at polling places where plainclothes deputies were stationed Aug. 2.

“We’re pretty happy. In November, we’ll turn it up a notch because we know that the turnout is going to be more, the intensity is going to be higher,” Penzone said.

“A lot is at stake, so we’ll continue on the course we’ve been on. It’s just a matter of being organized and being ahead of the problems.”

In the weeks leading up to the primary, Penzone promised to dedicate resources to helping election workers feel safe on-site and spoke with Maricopa County Supervisor Chair Bill Gates and Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer.

“A lot of the credit goes to … Richer – he did such a great job,” Penzone said.

“We were ahead of the issues in a lot of places, which was good because I think it kind of sent the message we’d hoped for: come, vote, have a great day [but] don’t be a distraction, don’t be an intimidator, don’t create problems.”

It wasn’t a perfect day, by any means.

“The things we saw weren’t criminal, they were just unnecessary, almost bullying tactics,” Penzone said.

The sheriff said some election workers were recorded on cellphones going into and out of polling sites and the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office on Election Day.

That issue was quickly resolved, Penzone said.

“What complaints we see on election night, that the ballots take too long to get counted, that they need to get done. Well, that takes people power and if you’re scaring people from being a part of that process, then how can you expect the results or the process to run efficiently?

“You’re creating the problem and complaining about the problem. Either be part of the solution or get out of the way.”

The general election is Nov. 8.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Bipartisan state budget of $16 billion passes in Arizona Legislature...

Associated Press

Arizona lawmakers pass bipartisan $16.1 billion budget, fix $1.4 billion deficit

Arizona lawmakers passed a $16.1 billion bipartisan state budget, which Gov. Hobbs negotiated with GOP leaders, on Saturday evening.

2 hours ago

Southbound Loop 101 on-ramp in Scottsdale to close (ADOT Photo)...

Bailey Leasure

Southbound Loop 101 on-ramp in Scottsdale to close for 2 months

 The southbound Loop 101 on-ramp at Princess Drive and Pima Road in Scottsdale is scheduled to be closed for two months

4 hours ago

Improvements coming to Brooks Crossing Park (City of Chandler Photo)....

Bailey Leasure

New improvements coming to Chandler’s Brooks Crossing Park

Chandler City Council approves a construction agreement that will allow for improvements to Brooks Crossing Park.

5 hours ago

The new Desert Sage Restaurant & Bar inside the recently renovated Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hot...

Brandon Brown/Phoenix Business Journal

Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hotel & Spa wraps up extensive renovation

The Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hotel & Spa hotel in Glendale recently underwent a nine-month long, multimillion-dollar renovation.

5 hours ago

arizona water conservation...

Nick Borgia

Arizona to invest $8.5 million for water conservation project

Arizona senators announced that $8.5 million will be invested in Arizona to continue a feasibility study related to water conservation.

15 hours ago

guns and drugs...

Nick Borgia

22-year-old Tucson man indicted for trafficking firearms and drugs

A Tucson man was indicted by a federal grand jury for having possession of multiple illegal firearms, weapon attachments and cocaine.

19 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Beat the heat, ensure your AC unit is summer-ready

With temperatures starting to rise across the Valley, now is a great time to be sure your AC unit is ready to withstand the sweltering summer heat.


Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Maricopa County Sheriff Penzone says election security plan will go up ‘notch’ in fall