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Lawyer who quit Legislature rebuked for campaign misconduct

The Arizona judge who presides over attorney discipline matters has signed a formal reprimand of a lawyer and former state legislator for unprofessional conduct during his unsuccessful 2020 campaign for Yavapai County attorney.

Presiding Disciplinary Judge Margaret Downie’s Jan. 19 order stemmed from a Dec. 17 agreement in which ex-Rep. David Stringer acknowledged sending campaign mailers that mischaracterized court rulings to impugn County Attorney Sheila Polk’s character, The Daily Courier reported.

In the agreement, Stringer admitted that he falsely suggested that courts had determined that Polk acted dishonestly as county attorney and that he knowingly approved the mailers and didn’t adequately supervise his political consultants.

Polk defeated Stringer by a 2-1 margin in the 2020 Republication primary. She was re-elected in the general election to her sixth four-year term.

Stringer resigned from the Legislature in 2019 after it was revealed that he was arrested in 1983 and accused of paying teenage boys for sex. Stringer denied that allegation and said he struck a deferred prosecution agreement because of a chance that he could lose.

Stringer said he quit his House seat to protect his law license rather than violate a court order by complying with a subpoena for records.

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