Maricopa County Attorney’s Office Seal
Maricopa County Attorney’s Office
Justice for All
August 2017
Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery
I’d like to update you on our very busy summer programs and what we’ve got coming up for the fall.

Our Safe Kids Summer program has already connected with over 2,500 children throughout the Valley. We’ll see this number increase, too, as we add upcoming events and presentations.

This month we launch our annual, award-winning Friday Night Football Patrol, where we visit area high schools on game day and sign-up teens to pledge to stay drug and alcohol free.

I also want to share with you some new strategies we are implementing in our ongoing mission to better serve the community and impact crime.

Our community is continually changing. Maricopa County is the fastest-growing county in America. New crime trends evolve and substance abuse continues to be a grave concern, particularly with the current opioid epidemic. I believe that to serve you, our Office and the way we fulfill our duties, needs to evolve as well. We’re analyzing crime data to better understand what’s happening in our neighborhoods and who the criminals are, and we’re realigning and expanding our Community Based bureaus to better partner with law enforcement and residents.

With the news about successful programs and efforts, we also had tragic news the last weekend of July. We had gone 89 days with no vehicular heatstroke deaths of children or pets as part of our “Don’t Leave Me Behind” summer vehicular heat stroke campaign. Sadly, that weekend our community suffered the tragic deaths of two young lives... each one of them left in a hot vehicle. Because of this tragedy, I want to remind every County resident we all have a duty to remain vigilant. These are senseless tragedies that can be prevented. Never leave a child or a pet unattended in a parked car--not even for a minute.

We will continue to work hard to make our community a place we are all proud to live, work and raise families in.
Bill Montgomery Signature

MCAO Leading a Smart Approach to Prosecution 

MCAO is at the forefront nationwide of innovative approaches to prosecuting and reducing crime in our community and has recently launched an Intelligence Focused Prosecution strategy using data and research to impact crime.

When you think about professionals in our community who work to stop criminals and prevent crime, the first group most people think about are the police. These brave and dedicated men and women are on the front lines every day to help keep us safe. But you may not realize that prosecutors, too, play a vital role in the battle against crime.

A commonly cited statistic is that roughly 20 percent of people commit 80 percent of the crime: the repeat offenders. By knowing who they are, prosecutors and judges can impose sentences that ensure the right people are in prison, and that they are serving terms that appropriately reflect their criminal behavior to protect our community from further instances of crime.

Crime analysts at MCAO have partnered with local law enforcement to use real-time data on crime and cases prosecuted to create a view of ongoing crime trends and the nature of criminal activity in our community and identify those perpetrators that over time are committing the most crime and causing the greatest harm.

This is a movement that is gaining attention. At the recent National Summit on Crime Reduction he attended in June, County Attorney Bill Montgomery participated in key breakout sessions extolling the need for an intelligence focus in jurisdictions nationwide. A panel discussion underscored the need to perform detailed research on crime data to understand what approaches will work best and what truly has an impact on deterring crime.

Intelligence Focused prosecution works hand-in-hand with the Community Based model that MCAO began in 2013 by creating four, geographically-based prosecution bureaus.

These bureaus have been uniquely positioned to build relationships with various communities in the Valley and understand the unique needs of each to improve public safety and enhance crime prevention. As this model has shown greater efficiencies and success, MCAO is again reorganizing, this time expanding into eight Community Based bureaus as defined below:

  • Phoenix Central Core/ South Mountain
  • North Central Phoenix
  • West Central Phoenix and Peoria
  • West Valley
  • Southwest Valley
  • East Central Phoenix and Scottsdale
  • Southeast Valley
  • Mesa

This organizational structure allows prosecutors to focus on as local a level as possible. By doing so, it is easier to identify the primary crime drivers for each area. Prosecutors are also able to build stronger relationships with the relevant law enforcement agencies and keep a handle on local drug trends, gang affiliations and gang activity, and repeat offenders.

You can watch Bill Montgomery discuss these topics and more about his participation in the National Summit on Crime Reduction on MCAOTV at

MCAO on Patrol for Drug-Free Teens
Friday Night Football Patrol—coming to a high school near you!

MCAO & 104.7 KISS FM Present Friday Night Football Patrol 2017

This month, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, in partnership with 104.7 KISS FM, is launching its 2017 season of Friday Night Football Patrol (FNFP). County Attorney Bill Montgomery, KISS FM’s DJ Reid and MCAO staff volunteers will be visiting ten high school football games throughout Maricopa County encouraging teens to sign the drug-free pledge, vowing to stay drug- and alcohol-free.

 “We have a great time every year at the games talking with teens and parents about making smart choices that could have a great impact on kids’ futures,” said Bill Montgomery. “We want to reinforce the message that a fun and happy life doesn’t include using drugs or abusing alcohol.”

On game night, MCAO and KISS FM set up booths near the field and DJ Reid emcees the festivities. Staff volunteers talk with with students who sign the drug-free pledges while the KISS FM staff gives away prizes. At half-time, Reid draws one of the pledges from the box and that lucky winner receives a sponsored prize. Since the program began in 2011, more than 20,000 students have signed the pledge.

On game day, MCAO staff volunteers visit the high school during the lunch periods for a pre-game rally and have students sign the teen drug-free pledge—giving an opportunity for students who may not be attending the game that night.

The 2016 season saw a record number of students signing the pledge, reaching an all-time high number of 8,612 pledges. This year, as an added incentive, the schools will compete for the highest numbers of pledges signed and the highest percentage per capita of pledges signed. The two winning schools will receive a pizza party courtesy of KISS FM and Papa John’s.

This fun-filled program allows MCAO staff volunteers to visit with high school students and Bill Montgomery hands out MCAO’s Handy Helpful Handbook for parents on substance abuse and discusses prevention issues with parents and guardians attending the games.

MCAO’s Friday Night Football Patrol program has been honored with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo).

2017 Schedule:
       8/18 – Centennial High School Coyotes

       8/25- Higley High School Knights
       9/1- Desert Ridge High School Jaguars
       9/8- Boulder Creek High School Jaguars
       9/15- Westwood High School Warriors
       9/22- Perry High School Pumas
       9/29- coming soon
       10/6- coming soon
       10/13- Notre Dame High School Saints
       10/20- North Canyon High School Rattlesnakes

For more information about Friday Night Football Patrol and other programs focused on teens, please visit For more information about MCAO community outreach initiatives, please visit

Operation Guardian Project Safe Neighborhoods develops effective strategies

Project Safe Neighborhoods

The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, along with the Phoenix Police Department, Maricopa County Adult and Juvenile Probation and the ASU Center for Violence Prevention and Community Safety along with several other federal, state and local law enforcement entities are working together on Operation Guardian to identify and combat violent gang and gun crime offenders. This Project Safe Neighborhoods effort is being implemented in Maricopa County thanks to a significant grant awarded to the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission (ACJC) by the US Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Assistance. Operation Guardian established a task force to implement violent gang and gun crime enforcement, intervention and prevention initiatives. Together with MCAO’s new effort on targeted crime analysis and research-based practices it will result in improved public safety in our communities.

In late 2015, a process began to identify the most violent street gangs in Phoenix. This “gang audit” identified the ten most violent gangs operating in the Valley and included important information such as alliances with other gangs, types of crimes that gang members were engaging in, and the size of the gangs. Information from Phoenix Police Department patrols as well as gang officers was analyzed and summarized during the audit. These gangs were ultimately found to be participating in crimes ranging from shoplifting, prostitution and party crews to drug sales, drive-by shootings and homicides. The audit helped identify the specific gangs that Operation Guardian would target and also helped solidify the social service organizations available to help and the first offenders who would be contacted. The next step was to reach out directly to specific gangs and their members and deliver an explicit message that violence would no longer be tolerated. In addition, appropriate criminal sanctions to include arrest and prosecution would commence each time violence occurred.

For example, a documented member of a local Phoenix gang was invited to participate in a “call-in” as part of Operation Guardian -- where he was told about the program and the penalties of offending. This particular gang member was on probation for several felonies. One month after being informed of the swift consequences should he re-offend, he was arrested driving a stolen vehicle and charged with seven felony counts. One-size-fits-all approaches don’t often work with these kinds of offenders. Effective violence and gun crime reduction interventions need to be tailored to the specific jurisdiction and the gang and its membership in order to be effective. And since the development of good analysis starts with good data, the right offender was identified and contacted and ultimately “failed” out of the program. His matter is currently being prosecuted.

“Operation Guardian presents a unique opportunity to partner with fellow law enforcement agencies and community stakeholders to develop effective strategies for reducing unlawful use of guns and associated gang crimes,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “With continued work, this approach can prove successful and will help get dangerous gang offenders off the streets.” The grant from ACJC provides resources to assist with the identification and then subsequently with organizing social services – so that the right organizations are available to provide assistance to participants like education, employment, emergency assistance, treatment and mentoring. Operation Guardian increases law enforcement and prosecutors knowledge to effectively implement reduction strategies and increases awareness among those engaging in gang crimes on the consequences of their violent behavior, ultimately increasing awareness among the public on how they can prevent these kinds of dangerous crimes.

Watch the County Attorney talk about Project Safe Neighborhoods at a recent press conference at

Fall Citizens Academy Classes
Now Accepting Applications

Citizens Academy Logo

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be a prosecutor, or how a criminal case gets to trial, our Citizens Academy is for you.

The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office is the nation’s third-largest county prosecutorial agency with a jurisdiction comprising nearly four million residents across more than 9,200 square miles. Our prosecutors handle well over 30,000 felony criminal cases each year.

The Citizens Academy takes you behind the scenes to show you how a case progresses from the initial investigation through final sentencing. You’ll sit in on courtroom proceedings, take a tour of the jail, and learn about trial exhibits, cold case investigations and more.

Most importantly, you’ll come away with a greater understanding of the unique role a prosecutor plays in our criminal justice system.

Academy classes are a full day once a month, and we are now accepting applications for fall classes resuming September 21.

To apply for the MCAO Citizens Academy, complete an online application at or call (602) 506-3411.

MCAO Launches New Financial Safety Training For Small Businesses

The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office has a group of attorneys and staff that focus on cases involving fraud and identity theft. As part of their commitment to serve our community they not only seek justice in cases involving these types of crimes, but they are also committed to preventing financial crimes before they occur. The Fraud and Identity Theft Enforcement Bureau, or FITE, has recently developed an outreach program designed to help small business owners understand the issue of embezzlement and what tools they can use to safeguard themselves.

FITE prosecutors have handled some heartbreaking cases of embezzlement involving local small businesses, and after seeing many of the same mistakes cost trusting employers thousands, they wanted to help educate our small business community and prevent future victimization. This fall, FITE bureau members will be giving presentations directly to the small business community designed to alert businesses both to the warning signs of fraud and theft within their organizations, and steps to take to prevent it from happening. The training will highlight several areas where embezzlement may occur and why a system of checks and balances is important, especially in the areas of payroll, collections, and bookkeeping. The training will also highlight several real life cases to help attendees understand why safeguards are necessary and explain what a small business owner can do if they find or suspect embezzlement.

Currently our prosecutors are working with small business associations to schedule trainings. Any small business group who is interested in scheduling this training can fill out a request form at

Watch Bill Montgomery talk about this new training on MCAOTV at

MCAO’s Latest Annual Report Now Available

2016 MCAO Annual Report

Did you know that law enforcement agencies submitted over 43,000 cases to MCAO prosecutors for review last year? Or that MCAO employees drove 516,163 miles on County business in 2016? Or that the MCAO received nearly 1,300 new public records requests? These are just a few of the many statistics and factoids you’ll find in our 2016 Annual Report, which is now available online at

The report contains a summary of the work handled by each of the individual bureaus in the Office, including a selection of noteworthy cases and significant achievements for the year. Also included are data tables that list the top offenses charged in various categories of crime and a breakdown of the case submittals received from the more than 30 different law enforcement agencies that work in partnership with the Office.

“Once again, the MCAO has successfully fulfilled its mission to provide a safe and well-governed community by delivering high-quality prosecution and this report presents a comprehensive picture of this work,” said Maricopa County Bill Montgomery. “Our Office will continue to build on these achievements and provide service with integrity, justice for all.”

Don’t Leave Me Behind:

Vehicular Heatstroke a 100% Preventable Tragedy

MCAO Vehicular Heatstroke Campaign

This month holds the final 31 days of our Vehicular Heatstroke Campaign, and after the tragic loss of two young lives in July, we are committed to ensuring no other children or a pet are left behind inside a hot car in Maricopa County.  
Our county now joins a list of areas that have suffered a tragic loss of a child due to vehicular heatstroke. In Texas, seven children ranging in age from 3-years-old to just 7-months-old lost their lives after being left inside parked cars.  In Tennessee an 11-month old died after being left in hot car, marking the first time that state had a child die from vehicular heatstroke since 2012.
Vehicular heatstroke is listed as the number one cause of deaths in non-collision fatalities for children 14 and younger, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It is important to know the risk of vehicular heatstroke can occur in air temperatures of 80 degrees or less and even as low as 57 degrees. Interior temperatures can quickly rise to 125 degrees even with the windows slightly rolled down. Young children are especially at risk because they can fall asleep during a car ride making it easier for a driver to not notice them when the vehicle is parked. 
Recently Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery addressed the media about the Vehicular Heatstroke Campaign and reminded everyone “These are heat deaths that are 100% preventable, every single one!” He went on to cover some safety tips which included keeping keys out of the reach of children who may try to play in a parked car and always checking the backseat before you lock and leave your vehicle.
Those tips and more are available on our SafeKidsAZ webpage,, including videos to help spread the message and educate our community.  Another component of the campaign includes reaching out on social media. As we work to prevent another incident of a child or pet being left in parked cars for this month and beyond, we also encourage our community to follow us on Facebook and Twitter or look for the hashtag #DontLeaveMeBehind.
We hope that the message we have repeated over the last three months will remain in people’s minds even after this month….“Don’t Leave Me Behind!”

Upcoming Events Calendar

Upcoming Events Calendar

Friday Night Football Patrol (FNFP) @ Centennial High School

Friday, August 18
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Centennial High School
14388 North 79th Avenue
Peoria, AZ 85381

FNFP @ Higley High School

Friday, August 25
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Higley High School
4068 East Pecos Road
Gilbert, AZ 85295

FNFP @ Desert Ridge High School

Friday, September 1
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Desert Ridge High School
10045 East Madero Avenue
Mesa, AZ 85209

Cases of Community Interest

Mugshot Dillon Archuleta

Dillon Archuleta Sentenced to 13 Years for Deadly Shooting at a Party

Dillon Archuleta was sentenced to 13 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections for
second degree murder.

“This sentencing holds this defendant accountable for his actions and the young life he cut short, however nothing will undo the grief and loss suffered by the victim’s family and friends,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.
» View Full Story «

Mugshot Allen Johnson

Allen Johnson Sentenced to Five Years for Sexual Relationship with a Teenage Student

Allen Scott Johnson was sentenced to five years in the Arizona Department of Corrections, followed by lifetime supervised probation with sex offender conditions for three counts of attempted sexual conduct with a minor.

“This defendant used the trust afforded to him through his position as a school teacher to prey on an underage girl,” said County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “This sentence serves as a warning to those who target young victims of the harsh penalties this Office will pursue when you are caught.”

» View Full Story «

Mugshot Alan Champagne

Alan Champagne Found Guilty of Murdering Two People then Concealing Their Bodies in a Backyard

Alan Champagne was found guilty of first degree murder, second degree murder, kidnapping and two counts of abandonment/concealment of a body in connection with the deaths of 32-year-old Philmon Tapaha and 26-year-old Brandi Hoffner.

“This verdict shows our commitment to holding the defendant accountable and seeking justice for his victims despite his best efforts to conceal his evil deeds,” said County Attorney Bill Montgomery.

» View Full Story «

Mugshot Donald Linville

Donald Linville Sentenced to 121 Years for Secretly Recording Sexual Encounters with Women

Donald Linville was sentenced to 121.25 years in the Department of Corrections for two counts of surreptitious videotaping, one count of sexual conduct with a minor and 11 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.

“There are more than a dozen victims in this case consisting of women who were violated by someone they trusted and young children whose degree of victimization may never truly be known. This sentence is a clear demonstration of our commitment to hold the defendant accountable for all of his victims,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “Arizona has some of the strongest penalties in the country against possessors of child pornography and my Office will not hesitate to see to it that defendants face the full weight of justice,” he added.

» View Full Story «

Mugshot Jose Palacios-Ronquill

Jose Palacios-Ronquill Sentenced to 30 Years After DNA Matches Him to Serial Rape Case

Jose Palacios-Ronquill was sentenced to 30 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections for three counts of sexual assault,  followed by lifetime supervised probation with sex offender conditions for three counts of attempted sexual assault.

“This defendant preyed on women who were completely unknown to him and used violence and force to sexually assault them for his own gratification, making him one of the most dangerous types of offenders to our community,” said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery. “This sentencing showcases the dedication this Office has in ensuring justice is sought where sexual assault kits can identify a perpetrator.”

» View Full Story «

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