Gila County Superior Court Judge Robert Duber has announced that he is not running for re-election because of “bullying” and “political self-interest” by the Gila County Attorney’s Office.
The Payson Roundup reports that there has been an increasingly bitter confrontation between the Superior Court judges and prosecutors working for Gila County Attorney Bradley Beauchamp.
The newspaper reports that the dispute started with complaints by prosecutors that Judge Peter Cahill rejected some proposed plea bargains. The prosecutor’s office has been routinely requesting a new judge anytime a criminal case is assigned to Cahill, which means Judge Duber has been taking the majority of criminal cases. This has led to a huge backlog.
Judge Duber also told the Roundup that the current county prosecutor’s office has skirted the the ethical edge when it comes to key rules—like disclosing evidence.
Duber says that in his 28 years on the bench, he has never encountered such a toxic and confrontational atmosphere.
Meanwhile, Chief Deputy Gila County Attorney Shawn Fuller faces charges filed by the State Bar disciplinary council for a series of incidents in which he walked out of the court in a dispute with Judge Cahill or interrupted defense attorneys. Fuller has apologized to Judge Cahill.
(Read the entire Payson Roundup article here.)