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Report: Babeu resists turning over laptop

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu (Photo by Evan Wyloge/Arizona Capitol Times)

The Arizona Republic reports the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office is not cooperating with efforts by the county’s information-technology department to inspect some computer equipment as part of a federal investigation into potentially unlawful on-the-job political activity.

The Republic says emails show that staff members said Sheriff Paul Babeu directed them on March 28 not to turn over laptops for two employees as requested by the U.S. Office of Special Counsel.

The email was sent the same week that department spokesman Elias Johnson said county information technology staff members had been collecting data from his desktop computer, Babeu’s and those of two other employees.

According to the emails, Babeu said the laptops will not be turned over for review because they contain sensitive law-enforcement information.

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