Understaffing cited in botched sex-crime probes - Tucson News Now

Understaffing cited in botched sex-crime probes

PHOENIX (AP) -

A report examining hundreds of sex-crimes cases that were inadequately investigated or weren't looked into at all by the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office attributes the failures to understaffing and mismanagement.

The mismanagement in Sheriff Joe Arpaio's sex-crimes squad includes hundreds of pieces of evidence that weren't put into evidence storage and instead were left in offices or taken home by detectives.

The internal affairs investigation released Monday blamed officers for some failures and noted that the sex-crimes squad was "overworked and understaffed," but on Monday rescinded letters threatening to discipline the officers in question.

Arpaio apologized for the bungled cases and has since said his office has moved to clear up the inadequately investigated cases and has taken steps to prevent the problem from happening again.

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