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Updated Dec 4, 2013 - 6:27 am

County Attorney says 'shut up' to critics urging DES director's firing

PHOENIX -- Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery said it's too early to call for anyone's resignation, as the investigation continues into why Child Protective Services failed to investigate some 6,000 cases.

Some of Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's critics say she should call for a special legislative session to look into the matter and that she should fire Department of Economic Security Director Clarence Carter.

Montgomery has a special message to those who are calling for those actions.

"Why don't you just shut up and be an adult for a change? Let's go through a process in which we can identify issues, identify the resources necessary to fix it and then make responsible decisions," he said.

Montgomery said the governor is doing a good job of quickly investigating what went wrong.

"We need to keep in mind that it was just a mere few weeks ago when this problem initially came to light and then was publicly disclosed," said Montgomery. "The response from a state level bureaucracy, in terms of how bureaucracies usually act, has been at lightning speed."

The county attorney is hoping that an investigation by the Department of Public Safety will answer a number of questions.

"What permitted this situation to occur? What sort of administrative policies or procedures were in place that allowed someone to think that this was an appropriate way to dispose of cases?" Montgomery remarked.

He added that once that investigation is complete, "we'll see what the next important steps are."

Montgomery also said it's too early to say whether anyone will be prosecuted.

About the Author

Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I am married to my wife Rene', who is a librarian in the Washington school district. During free time, I may be found playing basketball in the driveway with my son, Devin. He's also keeping me busy with school, Little League, and playing in chess tournaments around the Valley.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: Doug Oldham gospel concert in the 1970s at the old East High School in Phoenix.

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Northern Hills Community Church in Phoenix. We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.


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