$50M claim filed over fatal eviction shooting in Tucson
Apr 23, 2023, 11:26 AM
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The family of an Arizona property manager who was fatally shot during an attempted eviction in Tucson last year has filed a $50 million claim against Pima County and others.
An attorney representing Angela Fox’s family alleges in the claim that county Constable Deborah Martinez-Garibay had cocaine, amphetamine, methamphetamine and alcohol in her system at the time of the fatal shooting and also was under investigation by the county for felony fraud, the Arizona Republic reported Sunday.
Fox, 28, was a property manager for a management company that included Lind Commons Apartments in Tucson.
She went with Martinez-Garibay to evict tenant Gavin Lee Stansell on Aug. 25 last year.
An eviction complaint filed 10 days earlier by a landlord in Pima County Consolidated Justice Court indicated Stansell had previously threatened and intimidated neighbors with a gun in July.
Tucson police said the 24-year-old Stansell fatally shot Fox, Martinez-Garibay and a neighbor at the apartment complex before killing himself.
The claim, which is a precursor to a lawsuit, said Martinez-Garibay knew that Stansell possessed a firearm but still had Fox accompany her to serve the eviction.
Martinez-Garibay, 43, was hired in March 2022 when her predecessor reportedly quit over frustration about serving eviction notices.
Attorneys for Fox’s family said in the claim that Martinez-Garibay was unfit for the job because she had not received the mandatory constable training.
The claim also said that after Martinez-Garibay was hired, it was discovered she had falsified signatures on her nomination petition to run for constable and wasn’t a resident of the county’s Precinct 8 as candidates were required.
Constables are elected peace officers who serve civil or criminal papers for Pima Justice Court and several county agencies. They can also serve papers from courts outside the region.
The state Attorney General’s Office and the Arizona Constable Ethics, Standards and Training Board are also named in the claim.
A call to Pima County officials seeking comment wasn’t immediately returned Sunday.