Pinal County Sheriff cleared of abuse of power charges

August 31, 2012

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu has been cleared in an investigation into whether he abused his authority. Earlier this year, Sheriff Babeu’s former boyfriend Jose Orozco revealed Babeu is gay and claimed Babeu threatened him with deportation. 

The Sheriff accused Orozco of mishandling Babeu's Twitter and websites. Friday, State Solicitor General David Cole said Babeu committed no crimes and will face no charges. Cole also cleared Orozco of any wrongdoing.

Babeu was running for congress when the scandal broke. He dropped out and is now running for reelection as Pinal County Sheriff. Babeu pointed to his victory in Tuesday’s Republican primary as evidence the country is becoming more accepting. 

“The fact that I’m gay -- or if you’re straight, or if you’re white, or if you’re black, or Hispanic, or Native American, or if you’re Jewish, or Christian, or Mormon -- shouldn’t matter," Babeu said. "What matters in America is the value you add to your community, your performance, and the results.”

Babeu will face Democrat Kevin Taylor and Independent Ty Morgan in November’s general election.

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