Thursday, January 17, 2008

County Attorney Thanks Public for “Overwhelming” Response to Crime Prevention Booklet

Vows to Print More Copies if Necessary to Fill Demand

County Attorney Andrew Thomas today thanked the public for its “overwhelming” response to his office’s newly published crime prevention handbook, and vowed to print additional copies if necessary to satisfy public demand.

So far, the public already has requested more than 13,000 copies of the booklet and completed 2,500 downloads of the handbook from the office’s website, in addition to the approximately 600,000 copies that were placed in newspapers in the Valley last week. Requests have come from citizens, civic groups and government agencies. Phone calls, emails and letters to the office have offered “effusive praise” and have been almost 100 percent positive.

Appearing at a press conference with community anti-crime activists, Thomas said, “Citizens who wish to protect themselves from criminals deserve a copy of this handbook.” Thomas said media claims that his office had refused to fulfill public records requests about the cost were misleading because, among other things, the advertising departments of Valley newspapers had not yet submitted their bills to the office, so those requests could not be completed. The money used to pay for the handbooks came from a line-item appropriation from the board of supervisors dedicated specifically to “crime prevention.”

Noting that his office has returned over $1 million in leftover funds to county coffers in each of the last two fiscal years, and that the number of employees has not grown in the office in the three years since he took office despite an exploding county population, Thomas said he had “set a standard for fiscal leadership that may well be without precedent in modern Arizona history.”

Thomas said he had campaigned for county attorney on a platform of crime prevention, and he is fulfilling that promise by providing these booklets to citizens. He attributed criticism to an “alliance of politicians and critics in the media who oppose my policies on illegal immigration.” The matter was a “manufactured controversy, coming from critics who don’t like the fact that I’m the only elected prosecutor in America who prosecutes illegal immigrants for entering the country illegally. That’s what this is about.”

He added that the booklet “tells the truth about the link between crime and illegal immigration.”

Thomas noted that other elected officials who had performed similar services, including books and booklets handed out to public schoolchildren, had received little if any media scrutiny. The mere mention of his name and an introduction in the booklet by Thomas, he said, were “appropriate and hardly flashy.”

For more information contact:
Mike Anthony Scerbo, Public Information Officer
602) 506-3170 (office) or (602) 489-6913 (cell)

(note - for comparison, see

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