Days after being outed as gay and accused of threatening his former boyfriend, conservative Arizona Sheriff Paul Babeu on Tuesday called for independent investigators to look into claims that the man stole from and impersonated him.
The request came in a letter to the sheriff and top prosecutor in Gila County, which neighbors Babeu’s own Pinal County in Arizona.
In the letter, the rising Republican star also asked the investigators to look into allegations that he threatened his former boyfriend with deportation if their relationship ever became public.
The request represents a dramatic turn from what Babeu said just a few days ago, when he accused his former lover of committing crimes against him but said he had no plans to take legal action.
“I am requesting the assistance of your offices to conduct a joint comprehensive investigation into the recent allegations made publicly against me and my office including possible crimes committed against me personally,” Babeu’s letter said. “I request that your investigation look into allegations of human rights violations, threatening and intimidating, misuse of public resources, theft of property, theft of identity, fraud and impersonation.”
The sheriff said during a news conference on Saturday that the his ex-boyfriend, a former campaign volunteer who has since been identified as Jose Orozco, had accessed his campaign website and social media accounts without his permission. Babeu called those actions criminal.
Read Babeau’s letter below:
Nick Martin is an associate editor at TPM in New York City. He came to the site in 2011 as a reporter for TPMMuckraker. Previously, he worked in Arizona, first as a staff reporter for a local newspaper and later as a freelance journalist. He also ran the news blog Heat City. Contact him: nick [at] talkingpointsmemo.com