Against attorney's advice, Stoddard spends the night in jail after all

By Nick R. Martin | December 1st, 2009 | 10:01 pm | 35 Comments »

Detention officer Adam Stoddard ignored his attorney’s advice tonight and bunked up in a Maricopa County jail, despite the fact that he cannot yet be booked there.

His attorney, Tom Liddy, said earlier that a clerical error by a judge had prevented the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office from booking one of their own into the jails.

“I told him to go home,” Liddy said. “But he said, no, he wanted to stay because that’s what the judge ordered.”

Stoddard was sent to the jail after he refused an order by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe to hold a news conference and publicly apologize to a local defense attorney.

The apology was called for after Stoddard was caught on courtroom security video on Oct. 19 taking a confidential document from the files of public defender Joanne Cuccia. He told the judge he believed the document would reveal some crime that was about to happen, but Donahoe rejected that, saying the paperwork revealed no such thing.

Donahoe gave him a deadline of Monday to apologize or else face jail time.

In a defiant public statement yesterday, Stoddard said he would rather go to jail than “apologize for doing the job I’ve been trained to do.”

But when Stoddard arrived for booking this evening, his peers at the sheriff’s office told him the paperwork to incarcerate him was somehow incorrect.

Liddy said he’s clueless about the logistics of Stoddard’s jailhouse stay tonight. “He is there voluntarily,” Liddy said.

The sheriff’s office didn’t have much to say either, with a spokesman adding only that Stoddard checked in at about 6 p.m.

Liddy said he still plans to go to the judge in the morning to take care of the clerical error so Stoddard can get booked into the system.

Under the judge’s order, Stoddard must stay there until he agrees to apologize for taking the paperwork. The sheriff’s office declined to say which county facility he is being housed in.


  • Name

    OK, props to him for standing up for his convictions and heading to detention anyway. Now his attorney should explain to him the importance and sanctity of attorney/client privilege and how he violated that, and advise him to take the graceful way out that the judge has offered: apologize.

    And after that, he should never be allowed to serve as an officer of the court.

  • Name

    OK, props to him for standing up for his convictions and heading to detention anyway. Now his attorney should explain to him the importance and sanctity of attorney/client privilege and how he violated that, and advise him to take the graceful way out that the judge has offered: apologize.

    And after that, he should never be allowed to serve as an officer of the court.

  • Name

    This whole thing misses the point. Stoddard made a huge mistake. He took documents that he shouldn’t have, and when caught tried to pin the blame on security. MCSO’s defense that Stoddard was justified as the Mexican Mafia had used attorneys to smuggle contraband smeared the professional reputation of an otherwise sterling attorney. Stoddard, and the MCSO, needed to apologize for this attack on her reputation.

  • Name

    This whole thing misses the point. Stoddard made a huge mistake. He took documents that he shouldn't have, and when caught tried to pin the blame on security. MCSO's defense that Stoddard was justified as the Mexican Mafia had used attorneys to smuggle contraband smeared the professional reputation of an otherwise sterling attorney. Stoddard, and the MCSO, needed to apologize for this attack on her reputation.

  • http://yahoo.com/ Name

    This whole thing misses the point. Stoddard made a huge mistake. He took documents that he shouldn't have, and when caught tried to pin the blame on security. MCSO's defense that Stoddard was justified as the Mexican Mafia had used attorneys to smuggle contraband smeared the professional reputation of an otherwise sterling attorney. Stoddard, and the MCSO, needed to apologize for this attack on her reputation.

  • Anonymous

    I just wanted to say thank you for your great coverage of this story.

  • RFS78

    I just wanted to say thank you for your great coverage of this story.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think we really know any of that, Name. If the Deputy is in jail, he’s probably not really in custody; this is all unofficial. There’ll be no way to verify this cute little story. We don’t know what facility he’s in, so we can’t physically go see if he’s there. If we go to one and he’s not, they just say he was at a different one that moment. I’m very suspicious.

  • identifier

    I don't think we really know any of that, Name. If the Deputy is in jail, he's probably not really in custody; this is all unofficial. There'll be no way to verify this cute little story. We don't know what facility he's in, so we can't physically go see if he's there. If we go to one and he's not, they just say he was at a different one that moment. I'm very suspicious.

  • Spanky

    WTF Nick?

    Quote: Stoddard was sent to the jail after he refused an order by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe to hold a news conference and publicly apologize to a local defense attorney.

    NO! Stoddard was sent to jail for contempt. The news conference & apology was just a alternative punishment for CONTEMPT instead of jail.

    The order always has and will be about Stoddard being found in CONTEMPT by the court.

  • Spanky

    WTF Nick?

    Quote: Stoddard was sent to the jail after he refused an order by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe to hold a news conference and publicly apologize to a local defense attorney.

    NO! Stoddard was sent to jail for contempt. The news conference & apology was just a alternative punishment for CONTEMPT instead of jail.

    The order always has and will be about Stoddard being found in CONTEMPT by the court.

  • http://ingunowners.com/forums/politics_laws_and_2nd_amendment/59941-deputy_steals_defense_lawyers_file-5.html#post699553 Deputy Steals Defense Lawyers File – Page 5 – INGunOwners

    [...] pink underwear like everyone else and that he's not eating the same food that the inmates get. From Heat City [...]

  • Anonymous

    Stoddard is obviously an idiot – a highly-prinicipled idiot, but an idiot nonthleless. All you would expect from a detention officer, of course.

  • slimsmith

    Stoddard is obviously an idiot – a highly-prinicipled idiot, but an idiot nonthleless. All you would expect from a detention officer, of course.

  • http://brownandlittlelaw.com/blog1/2009/12/02/no-constitutional-crisis-here/ No Constitutional Crisis Here — Chandler Criminal Defense

    [...] constitutional rights, Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe held him in contempt, and Stoddard is now in jail after refusing to follow the judge’s order and apologize. The way I see it, the loser here [...]

  • http://www.heatcity.org Nick R. Martin

    @Spanky, let’s be clear. We’re talking about two different things here. The quote you used established a timeline of events; he went to jail after he refused to apologize. The judge gave Stoddard a window to hold the news conference, and when he refused the judge’s orders, he went to jail.

    Donahoe’s order of confinement might help clarify it:

    Detention Officer Adam Stoddard having been found in in-direct civil contempt of court, and having failed to comply with this Court’s lawful order of November 17, 2009, as amended on November 19, 2009, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Detention Officer Adam Stoddard self-surrender to the Maricopa County Jail, not to be released until further court order.

    Then again, maybe not.

  • http://www.heatcity.org Nick R. Martin

    @Spanky, let's be clear. We're talking about two different things here. The quote you used established a timeline of events; he went to jail after he refused to apologize. The judge gave Stoddard a window to hold the news conference, and when he refused the judge's orders, he went to jail.

    Donahoe's order of confinement might help clarify it:

    Detention Officer Adam Stoddard having been found in in-direct civil contempt of court, and having failed to comply with this Court’s lawful order of November 17, 2009, as amended on November 19, 2009, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Detention Officer Adam Stoddard self-surrender to the Maricopa County Jail, not to be released until further court order.

    Then again, maybe not.

  • http://www.heatcity.org Nick R. Martin

    @RFS78 You’re welcome! Thank you for the kind words.

  • http://www.heatcity.org Nick R. Martin

    @RFS78 You're welcome! Thank you for the kind words.

  • Norma

    What jail time? He certainly isn’t doing real jail time like any other person would. He’s probably at Arpaio’s penthouse. Everything is so orchestrated and such a joke. I guess the Arpaio’s Gestapo will prevail like always as long as it’s allowed to do whatever it wants without consequence.

  • Norma

    What jail time? He certainly isn't doing real jail time like any other person would. He's probably at Arpaio's penthouse. Everything is so orchestrated and such a joke. I guess the Arpaio's Gestapo will prevail like always as long as it's allowed to do whatever it wants without consequence.

  • ceanf

    “apologize for doing the job I’ve been trained to do.”…

    and what would that job training be? how to violate a defendant’s attorney-client privileged? or just how to violate their rights in general? i hope this punk pig gets booked. we will see how long he wants to stay then. the county should also fire the 19 officers that didn’t show up. because i am sure they all have received that special marikafka ‘training’ that tells them they are bound to a different set of laws than the rest of us ‘citizens’.

  • ceanf

    “apologize for doing the job I’ve been trained to do.”…

    and what would that job training be? how to violate a defendant's attorney-client privileged? or just how to violate their rights in general? i hope this punk pig gets booked. we will see how long he wants to stay then. the county should also fire the 19 officers that didn't show up. because i am sure they all have received that special marikafka 'training' that tells them they are bound to a different set of laws than the rest of us 'citizens'.

  • http://www.heatcity.org/2009/12/jail-records-show-no-sign-of-stoddard.html Jail records show no sign of Stoddard | Heat City

    [...] office had been unable to book its own employee that night and he ended up staying in jail “voluntarily,” he [...]

  • Sam H

    I agree he’s an idiot; but “highly principled?” You have to be joking! He has no more principles than the guy in the striped suit.

  • Sam H

    I agree he's an idiot; but “highly principled?” You have to be joking! He has no more principles than the guy in the striped suit.

  • http://www.heatcity.org/2009/12/pull-quote-tom-liddy.html Pull quote: Tom Liddy | Heat City

    [...] responding to an Arizona Republic reporter’s questions about whether jailed detention officer Adam Stoddard is, in fact, in [...]

  • Anonymous

    He did his job. Nobody is talking about the letter. The judicial system is going in this country, people like you protect criminals. I hope when all the criminals are free don’t go to your house……………..

  • chanlee

    He did his job. Nobody is talking about the letter. The judicial system is going in this country, people like you protect criminals. I hope when all the criminals are free don't go to your house……………..

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    [...] Sheriff’s deputies believe the bomb threat for the court building at Madison and Central avenues was related to one that cleared out the county’s main court facility less than a block away on Wednesday, causing extra headaches on a day that was already marred by political battles over the case of a jailed detention officer. [...]

  • http://www.heatcity.org/2009/12/thomas-arpaio-defend-their-war-as-judge-is-charged-with-obstructing-justice.html Thomas, Arpaio defend their war as judge is charged with obstructing justice | Heat City

    [...] a room full of reporters, the skepticism about the charges against Donahoe, who had recently jailed one of Arpaio’s officers and who was about to rule whether Thomas could hire special prosecutors from outside the state, was [...]

  • Bakes, Esq.

    As one who has been following this story from afar it is encouraging to see the level of outrage expressed locally at the outrageous behavior of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office, and this Deputy in particular. He “did his job” my left foot… there is no way he could casually have glanced down and saw what he claimed to have seen to begin with. The judge was being kind in refuting that nonsense excuse. He deliberately walked over to the table where the files are (for what purpose?) and stopped so that he could deliberately read the contents of the document poking out from the file… and then had the nerve to remove it and concoct some post-facto lie to attempt to justify his actions.

    Judge Lisa Flores was hugely incompetent as well for not stopping the proceedings to enquire as to what was taking place behind the defense table… since it was clearly happening in plain sight. The same goes for the professional disregard shown by the Prosecution for their colleague across the table. Had this been documents taken from the prosecution’s files it would be interesting to hear what rationalizations his defenders would attempt to spin in order to justify his indefensible actions.

  • Bakes, Esq.

    As one who has been following this story from afar it is encouraging to see the level of outrage expressed locally at the outrageous behavior of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office, and this Deputy in particular. He “did his job” my left foot… there is no way he could casually have glanced down and saw what he claimed to have seen to begin with. The judge was being kind in refuting that nonsense excuse. He deliberately walked over to the table where the files are (for what purpose?) and stopped so that he could deliberately read the contents of the document poking out from the file… and then had the nerve to remove it and concoct some post-facto lie to attempt to justify his actions.

    Judge Lisa Flores was hugely incompetent as well for not stopping the proceedings to enquire as to what was taking place behind the defense table… since it was clearly happening in plain sight. The same goes for the professional disregard shown by the Prosecution for their colleague across the table. Had this been documents taken from the prosecution’s files it would be interesting to hear what rationalizations his defenders would attempt to spin in order to justify his indefensible actions.

  • Bakes, Esq.

    As one who has been following this story from afar it is encouraging to see the level of outrage expressed locally at the outrageous behavior of the Maricopa County Sheriff's office, and this Deputy in particular. He “did his job” my left foot… there is no way he could casually have glanced down and saw what he claimed to have seen to begin with. The judge was being kind in refuting that nonsense excuse. He deliberately walked over to the table where the files are (for what purpose?) and stopped so that he could deliberately read the contents of the document poking out from the file… and then had the nerve to remove it and concoct some post-facto lie to attempt to justify his actions.

    Judge Lisa Flores was hugely incompetent as well for not stopping the proceedings to enquire as to what was taking place behind the defense table… since it was clearly happening in plain sight. The same goes for the professional disregard shown by the Prosecution for their colleague across the table. Had this been documents taken from the prosecution's files it would be interesting to hear what rationalizations his defenders would attempt to spin in order to justify his indefensible actions.

  • http://imagine2050.newcomm.org/2009/12/11/the-circus-continues-arpaio-raids-social-service-agency/ The Circus Continues: Arpaio Raids Social Service Agency | IMAGINE 2050

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