Wilcox's lawyer calls allegations careless, reckless

Posted: Updated:
Mary Rose Wilcox By Jennifer Thomas Mary Rose Wilcox By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX – 3TV hears Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox's side of the story for the first time on Tuesday, who is charged with 36 felony counts.

Her attorney announces he will file motions to dismiss and disqualify County Attorney Andrew Thomas from trying the case.

Supervisor Wilcox did not make any statements. Instead her attorney did all the talking, pointing the finger right back at County Attorney Andrew Thomas. Defense Attorney Colin Campbell says, “She and I are confident the charges will be dismissed and that she will be found innocent.”

Wilcox was indicted on counts including conflict of interest, perjury, forgery and false swearing. She sat silent alongside her husband during the morning news conference.

Campbell says, “I'm going to instruct my client not to speak on matters subject to the investigation.”

Instead Campbell, a former superior court presiding judge, spoke on her behalf calling the allegations both careless and reckless.

The county attorney's office disagrees. Barnett Lotstein, special assistant to the county attorney, says, “We're content to allow and to leave the final decision of Mrs. Wilcox’ guilt or innocence to a jury of her peers.”

The charges are related to loans the supervisor received from Prestamos, the lending arm of Chicanos Por La Causa, the same organization the supervisor voted in favor of granting county funds.

Lotstein adds, “We think under the circumstances here that it's hard to argue there's even an appearance of conflict of interest.”

Her attorney says the loans were business loans not personal loans and says the indictment is full of discrepancies regarding the number of loans and the supervisor's voting record.

Lotstein says, “It would be unethical and unprofessional for me to discuss the evidence in the media.” He adds, “We're not going to try the case in the media.”

In the meantime, the defense is fighting not only to have the case dismissed but as Campbell says, We will file a motion to disqualify the county attorney this week from handling this particular case.”

Again the defense is seeking to have all 36 counts dismissed and says they are anxious to get their hands on the grand jury transcripts where they believe some factual misstatements may have been made.