The Cop Needs to Be:
1 be detained and held in contempt
2 tried/convicted of the theft
3 be fired immediately
A deputy tries to steal incriminating evidence against his department from the suspect’s lawyer. Theft happens at the 50 sec mark.
A Maricopa County detention officer tried to explain Friday why he and a fellow sheriff’s office employee swiped a document from a defense attorney’s file in a bizarre scene that was caught on courtroom videotape.
Detention officer Adam Stoddard sputtered nervously through his testimony at a hearing in Maricopa County Superior Court, where he was ordered to give reasons for taking the document. For every reason he gave, however, he retreated just as quickly, contradicting himself throughout the two-hour hearing.
The whole thing surrounded a scene that took place in a Maricopa County courtroom on Oct. 19, all caught on a courthouse security tape.
The tape shows Stoddard walking to the defense table during a sentencing that day. He leans over the table and begins reading from a document in the file of defense attorney Joanne Cuccia, who was speaking before the judge and had her back turned to the table.
Stoddard can then be seen motioning to a fellow sheriff’s employee, deputy Francisco Campillo, and the two men pull the document from the file. Campillo leaves the courtroom with the document, then comes back moments later and places the original back in the attorney’s file. Cuccia quickly figures out what is going on and brings up the issue with the judge.
On Friday, Judge Gary Donahoe, the highest-ranking criminal court judge in Maricopa County, held the hearing to determine whether Stoddard and Campillo had the authority to take the document from the file.
Under state law, an officer can seize evidence or make an arrest if he sees a crime taking place. Essentially, that’s what Stoddard said he saw — or at least what he thought he saw — at the sentencing of Antonio Lozano on that day.
The detention officer, however, had a hard time sticking to his story.