Deputy constable breaking law by showing up to work?Posted: Updated:
Some serious questions have been raised about a Maricopa County deputy constable, who may be breaking the law every time he shows up for work.
Gilbert Trejo has been told by local and state officials that he is no longer qualified to carry out his duties and state law requires he get more training.
Trejo had no problem talking to CBS 5 News, after the deputy constable served an eviction in Phoenix Tuesday.
But the Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training Board does have a problem with the fact Trejo is still on the job.
AZ Post officials sent a letter to Maricopa County manager Tom Manos in May, stating that Trejo may be in violation of state law, which requires all deputy constables be certified by AZ POST, and go through extensive police training.
CBS5 asked Maricopa County spokesperson Cari Gerchick why Trejo is still carrying out the duties of a deputy constable.
"According to Mr. Trejo's attorney he is not holding himself out as a police officer or peace officer," Gerchick said. "I don't know that he is actually carrying a badge or a gun."
Trejo was wearing a badge and a gun when he was serving the eviction.
"I do everything a constable does," Trejo said. "I carry a gun and badge."
Trejo told CBS 5 News that he is up-to-date on all his firearms and constable training courses.
But valley attorney Joel Robbins said that's just not enough, and if Trejo is violating state law by performing the duties of a deputy constable - he could open the county and taxpayers up to a giant lawsuit if something goes wrong.
"If he doesn't have the requirements set forth by the statutes, the county is violating the law when it sends this fellow out there on the streets to enforce the law while carrying a gun," said Robbins.
Trejo said that he has an attorney and they do not believe he needs to be certified or find another job.
Trejo has been a deputy constable since 2005, years before the state legislature passed a law requiring certification.
Legally, Trejo said he should be grand fathered in, and left alone.
"I am trained in the constable job. I am trained to do my job," said Trejo. "I just want to do my job."
County officials have told Trejo that he can either get certified, or be moved to a different position.
But until the issue is resolved, Trejo remains on the job.
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