Border state crime soars


America's new crime capital is Arizona, prominent member of the small club of Mexican border states. Former Clinton administration appointee and current Arizona Governor, Janet Napolitano, must have some friends in high places at the Arizona Republic.  Buried on the back pages Wednesday was the story headlined:

Report: Arizona leads nation in overall crime

Meanwhile, today on the front page is this headline and story:

Arizona jury system serves as model for nation's trials

During the opening days of the Clinton administration, Bill and Hillary fired all existing U.S. Attorneys and had them replace with their hand—picked choices.  Napolitano, who will run for re—election next year, was their pick for the District of Arizona.  For a Governor who was to be tough on crime, the news that Arizona leads the nation in crime could not have been a welcome statistic to her 2006 campaign office.

No worries.  Napolitano friend and confidant, Sue Clark—Johnson, runs the Arizona Republic as its Chairman and CEO.  As virtually the only paper in town, the Republic is free to run stories friendly to Napolitano on the front page and all the rest craftily hidden in obscure sections.

How bad are the crime figures?  From the buried story:

The state is second in larceny rates, fourth in burglary rates and fifth in homicide rates.  A report from the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission said that Arizona has had the highest crime rate in the nation since 2000.

Part of the problem is the state's proximity to the Mexican border leading directly to drug related crime and car thefts.  Recently, Napolitano 'ordered' a closed summit of law enforcement officials in the northern city of Flagstaff (far from the problem) to come up with solutions to the border problem.  Her office reports that the summit has yielded this breakthrough in crime fighting: 12 state officers will be trained to work with the feds!

J. James Estrada  7 29 05