Sponsored by

Note: This story is more than 3 years old.

Ex-Ally Miller staffer 'confesses' he was behind bizarre blog

DesJarlais apparently conducted campaign activities on the clock

Timothy DesJarlais, a staffer for Ally Miller who quit his post after becoming the focus of an ongoing investigation into a peculiar political website, the "Arizona Daily Herald," has now owned up to his lies — at least in part.

After repeatedly denying involvement, inventing fake identities to divert attention, and a filing false federal crime report pointing the finger at another Republican, DesJarlais wrote a "confession" to Miller, and an apology to the man he tried to frame for what he and Miller earlier called criminal acts related to the website. Miller has yet to respond to public records requests for documents that could have made evident DesJarlais' involvement weeks ago, and could still clear up questions that remain about the extent of activities in her office.

In his emails, DesJarlais, a 19-year-old University of Arizona student who had been an employee in Miller's office since February, disclosed some of the convoluted dodges and repeated false statements he made to the public and, according to his statement, to Miller.

DesJarlais' confession came after weeks of denials that he was involved with the fake website, and repeated attacks on the press investigating the matter by him, Miller, and her surrogates.

Miller on Friday — the day that DesJarlais publicly re-launched the site but claimed he had "purchased" it from the anonymous person who'd set it up — denied that she had any involvement with the website, or prior knowledge that her former aide was behind it.

In the email made public Monday, DesJarlais admitted to masquerading as a reporter and creating the "Arizona Daily Herald" site, which was set up in April.

In addition to his involvement in the sham news website — although records from a computer used by DesJarlais in Miller's office were scrubbed before they were released — some of the remaining files indicate that he was improperly conducting activities related to his own political campaign while being paid by taxpayers.

Miller on Monday released a paper copy of an email that was apparently sent to her by her former communications staffer on Saturday.

Support TucsonSentinel.com today, because a smarter Tucson is a better Tucson.

'It’s not the crime that gets you… it’s the cover-up.' — Richard Milhous Nixon

In the email, which bore the subject line "Confession Regarding the AZ Herald," DesJarlais admitted what had been clear to outside observers for weeks: that he was behind the supposed news website, the "Arizona Daily Herald."

In the email, the former staffer admitted to repeated lies, although his account fell well short of untangling the complex web of fake identities and false statements he concocted in an attempt to cover his tracks and divert attention from himself and his boss's office. In fact, despite the labyrinth of lies, DesJarlais made some basic slip-ups that made his exposure inevitable once reporters began to dig into the scheme.

One person who early on had suspected DesJarlais' involvement and confronted him about it said Monday that the staffer "does have a problem with dealing with the truth" and disputed some of the details in his account.

"It appears Timothy is lying again in his apology letter to Ally," said Gini Crawford, the campaign manager for Marla Closen, a Republican running in the primary on the other side of the county from Miller's district.

DesJarlais did not respond to detailed questions TucsonSentinel.com sent to him Monday.

Miller said last Tuesday that she "had to take (DesJarlais) at his word" when he told her he was not behind the website, which was launched in May under a pseudonym used by DesJarlais elsewhere online. When he publicly re-launched the website Friday, while denying he had anything to do with its earlier incarnation, Miller said, "Things aren't looking very good for Mr. DesJarlais. If he was involved, I want him prosecuted."

Besides emailing Miller, DesJarlais also wrote Saturday to the GOP activist whom he publicly claimed was behind the site as he tried to cover-up his involvement. DesJarlais not only told Miller that John Dalton was responsible for the site, but filed a report with the FBI naming him. The former Miller staffer, who resigned on June 3 because of the investigation by TucsonSentinel.com and other news outlets, told Dalton over the weekend that "I am indeed the author" of the Herald, and asked that he "mercifully consider not pressing any charges against me" for connecting Dalton with the site.

Dalton said Monday that he was consulting with an attorney and was considering filing suit over the matter.

'Falken' confessed

DesJarlais, who is also gathering signatures as a candidate for the Marana School Board and is one of the organizers behind an initiative drive to change the Tucson City Charter to ward-only, wrote to Miller, to her private Yahoo email account, that he apologized to her for his "lying and cover-ups."

Support TucsonSentinel.com today, because a smarter Tucson is a better Tucson.

In his emails, DesJarlais copped to having pretended to being "Jim Falken," the supposed editor of the sham news outlet, re-using his frequent online alter-ego to found a blog to present a favorable view of Miller's political plans while questioning her opponents.

"I knew that no one would take anything I said seriously since I worked for you ... therefore, I used an old pseudonym of mine" to avoid being tied directly to Miller and her office, he said. "I was concerned our liberal press wouldn't give it due justice."

The connection between DesJarlais and "Jim Falken" was so transparent that it was uncovered by TucsonSentinel.com in moments, even before anything had been posted on the "Herald" website (on which nothing was posted prior to it being taken offline) or related social media accounts. From the time the existence of the Herald was brought to our attention, it took 16 minutes to establish that DesJarlais was connected to it, despite his having registered the website privately, to block the public from seeing its owner.

DesJarlais used "Falken" frequently as an roleplaying identity in conjunction with his imaginary nation of the "Democratic Republic of Dido Place," which is named after the street on which DesJarlais lives. Under both names, DesJarlais has blogged about the neighborhood-sized fantasy country, posting about executive orders and other actions by both "President DesJarlais" and "President Falken." Those posts include a Youtube video of "President Falken's Thanksgiving Address - 2014," featuring DesJarlais speaking to the camera, as well as the country's inclusion in the "Cyber Nations Wiki," a listing of other imaginary territories. That video was among the material quickly pulled from the Internet after the aide to the Republican supervisor was interviewed by me nearly a month ago.

The then-staffer for Miller had emailed various politicians about Miller's road plan, and signed up for several online newsletters from candidates in the guise of being "Falken," the editor of the non-existent "Herald."

He admitted in his confession to emailing GOP candidates Kim DeMarco and Closen, as well John Winchester, who is challenging Miller in the District 1 Republican primary, and the Regional Transportation Authority. Others who reported receiving emails from the purported editor of the "Herald" include GOP candidate Steve Christy, who's running in District 4 against Closen, Martin Bastidas, a Green Party candidate in District 5, and other sitting supervisors. Those who TucsonSentinel.com reached for comment on the "Herald" said they found it suspicious. Most chose to not reply to the emails.

"After seeing the empty Arizona Daily Herald website, I decided that it wasn't something I wanted to respond to," said Bastidas.

Winchester and retiring Supervisor Ray Carroll said weeks ago that they thought the site was set up to gather information that could be used against Miller's political opponents, but that the "catfishing" plot had been caught out.

'Lying and coverups'

DesJarlais also admitted to Miller that when he was interviewed by me on May 17 about a photograph he had posted of a Board of Supervisors meeting that day on the "Herald's" Facebook page, that he lied to me and claimed that he had texted it to someone else who had posted it.

During the interview, DesJarlais acknowledged his frequent use of the Falken persona, and having taken the photograph, but denied any connection to the Herald.

"When he pressed me for a name, I refused because there was no name," DesJarlais told Miller. "I immediately called you to inform you what happened. By then, I was up to my neck ... so I denied any involvement."

DesJarlais' confession to Miller did not mention the fact that the azdailyherald.com website was taken down within minutes after I interviewed him, and that other online accounts connected to the Herald and several websites related to both DesJarlais' "Falken" persona and his real name were quickly scrubbed that evening.

Last week, Miller expressed surprise at that fact, despite our reporting of the interview and vanishing postings having been widely reported by other outlets as well as being the linchpin of our first report breaking the news of DesJarlais' connection to the faux news site.

DesJarlais told Miller in his confession email that he had posted the photograph, which was taken on his smartphone, on the "Herald" page rather than on her official account when he forgot to switch accounts. Earlier, he had denied posting the photo himself, telling Miller and reporters that "a friend" had posted it.

The photo taken on Facebook was taken down on Tuesday afternoon, just hours after having been posted, after he was questioned by Crawford.

DesJarlais told Miller he had been confronted by Crawford, claiming she "threatened to expose me to you and Kim (DeMarco, another GOP candidate), stating that you both would destroy me."

Crawford shared what she said was an email she sent to DesJarlais that Tuesday, saying that she and Closen had spoken with a "political friend" who IDed DesJarlais that same day as being behind the emails from the "Herald."

Sponsorships available
Support TucsonSentinel.com & let thousands of daily readers know
your business cares about creating a HEALTHIER, MORE INFORMED Tucson

The Closen campaign chief said that "Marla and I were asking around if others knew of (Falken and the Herald)."

Crawford said she replied to an email from "Falken," addressing the recipient as "Timothy," describing him as a "fake reporter" and "childish" and asking "What in the heck were you thinking?"

"You work for Ally's supervisor office and Kim's campaign both would be horrified to hear you are emailing campaigns as a pretend reporter," Crawford's email said.

Crawford declined to share the name of the "political friend" who pointed to DesJarlais.

She said that "Falken" replied the same day, around 2 or 3 p.m., denying that he was DesJarlais. She said that she believed the denial, and did not pursue the matter nor tell Miller about it.

The photograph that was posted on the "Herald's" Facebook page was deleted before 5 p.m. that day. That evening, after I interviewed DesJarlais, the "Herald" vanished from the Internet — at least for the time being.

Will the real John Dalton please stand up?

DesJarlais told Miller that he "panicked and blurted out the name 'John Dalton'" when she pressed him on his story that week, after TucsonSentinel.com and the Arizona Daily Star submitted public records requests that could have cleared up the matter.

At the time, Miller did not respond to our request for comment on the "Herald" situation and DesJarlais. That prompted requests for specific sets of documents — which under the law should be promptly available for inspection by any member of the public.

DesJarlais admitted that he set up a Google Voice number for the supposed "Dalton," as was later reported by TucsonSentinel.com.

Miller said last week that DesJarlais had, at the time, shown her a text on his phone that was purportedly from "Dalton." She said she asked him to print it out, which he did, "cutting off the top." Miller said her aide deleted the text, against her instructions to keep it on his phone. She acknowledged that DesJarlais himself would have had to have entered Dalton's name in his phone for it to appear.

"The more I lied, the more I had trapped myself into a cycle where if I had come forward, I would have damaged myself, but little did I know that I had already gone to far (sic)," he wrote in his confession.

News reports about the Herald and DesJarlais' likely (and now readily apparent) connection were posted on May 19, after TucsonSentinel.com, the Arizona Daily Star and Tucson Weekly looked into the situation.

Thanks to our donors and sponsors for their support of local independent reporting. Join Chris Hostetter, Fund for Nonprofit News at the Miami Foundation, and Gary Mackender and contribute today!

Miller and DesJarlais each filed online crime reports with the FBI the next day, the Friday after the "Herald' prompted questions about its existence.

Those reports named Dalton, who is in fact a real person — a 25-year-old college student from Michigan who is involved in Republican politics, having been a delegate to the recent Arizona state convention.

That day, the real John Dalton expressed confusion and surprise that he had been connected to the "Herald," and concern that he had been named in a report to the FBI.

Miller and DesJarlais told the FBI and a TV station that Dalton should be investigated for impersonation and that, in Miller's account, he was "trying to interfere and smear an elected official by impersonating a member of my staff. He is also actively attempting to influence an election by posting false documents."

"I've only met Timothy DesJarlais and Ally Miller twice in my entire life," the real John Dalton said in an interview the day he was named. "I don't know what this is all about. I don't know them; I didn't have anything against them."

The pair also sent statements to a mostly anonymous blog that serves as a mouthpiece for Miller's statements, naming Dalton as the culprit behind the "Herald."

They claimed that Dalton was "impersonating" DesJarlais, even though the aide's name was never used in connection with the Herald account, and only reporting by TucsonSentinel.com uncovered the links.

Miller later released screenshots of both online reports, posting them on her Facebook page.

Miller also sent messages to the real Dalton via Facebook, telling him "You need to come clean."

"I'm meeting with the FBI on Monday to give them the details of what we know about this," Miller told him that Saturday evening, May 21, saying that the only John R. Dalton in Tucson had the same address and birthdate as the Dalton she was messaging.

Miller said that the FBI told her the case was its "highest priority." Several days later, FBI officials told local law enforcement there had been no contact between the supervisor and the Tucson FBI office, Pima County Sheriff Chris Nanos said.

Another member of the Dalton gang

Earlier that Saturday, an email sent from "editor@azdailyherald.com" to reporters attempted to deflect the situation, with the author identifying himself as "John R. Dalton Jr." but not the "John R. Dalton Jr." who DesJarlais and Miller had pointed to. The email said that "Dalton" had assumed the identity of "Jim Falken" after observing its use by DesJarlais, and that he had texted the Miller aide to ask him to send him a photo of the board meeting, after identifying himself as "John Dalton."

"Falken" told reporters:

I posted up the picture and it did surprise me how quickly he seemed to respond, but it has now dawned on me that he may have confused me with another "John Dalton." Upon further research, there is another John Dalton out there who has come from Michigan and ran for Arizona delegate during this year's state convention. It has come to my attention that Mr. DesJarlais has gotten me confused with this John Dalton, although we are two different people with different phone numbers numbers (sic). It also seems others have been confused and alleged that Mr DeJarlais is the owner of the Arizona Daily Herald.

The email included a number that was quickly determined to be provided by Google Voice, a system that allows anyone to sign up for a second phone number.

"Because of the nature of confusion surrounding my site, I have already terminated it and I will soon be deactivating this email," wrote the "Herald" editor Dalton/Falken. "I meant no ill will towards anybody and this is purely a news blogging attempt gone wrong. I hope all of you will understand and I wish all of you the best of luck moving forward into the summer."

There were no responses to calls to that number, or email replies made by reporters.

Another bizarre email sent to reporters the same Saturday from the same email address further attempted to muddle the situation, with Dalton/Falken/DesJarlais pointing to DesJarlais' involvement with a University of Arizona club connected to Faith Christian Church, which the Star has reported on in a series that likened the group to a cult.

"It is certainly curious that Supervisor Miller would hire a member of a radical religious cult to her staff," said the email. "I hope this provides some interesting material for you."

Reporters didn't nibble at the obvious red herring.

DesJarlais' emailed mea culpa to Miller did not mention either email or the numerous falsehoods he presented to reporters that day.

That Sunday, May 22, the man pointed out by DesJarlais and Miller sent an email to reporters, styling himself as "The Real John R. Dalton Jr."

Dalton said, "I have nothing, nor have ever had anything, to do with any part of the current scandal surrounding Supervisor Ally Miller and her staffer."

"Since ... Miller has already filed complaints with the authorities to investigate who the idiot is that is behind all of this, it is my hope that an investigation goes forward, so we can bring the person responsible up on criminal charges and placed behind bars," said the real Dalton, who has readily responded to reporters since being fingered by DesJarlais and Miller.

"On top of this, once a name is released, it is also my full intention to file a civil case in court against the individual or individuals," Dalton wrote. "I do not take lightly to someone using my name for illicit activities."

Let the records show

In the weeks that followed, TucsonSentinel.com and the Arizona Daily Star filed further public records requests, as questions arose about the case and DesJarlais' ongoing cover-up. While other Pima County offices have released some documents in response to those requests, Miller has repeatedly stalled complying with them.

On the afternoon of Wednesday, June 3, DesJarlais gave notice that he was resigning as of that Friday at 5 p.m. He told others in Miller's office that the stress from the investigations by reporters was too much for him.

"I resigned and I hoped perhaps I would be assumed guilty and the story would be dropped," he wrote Miller in his confessional email.

Although computer files from Miller's office had been requested on May 18, it was not until June 7 that county IT staffers retrieved the web histories and other browser files from those computers. On June 9, those files were released to TucsonSentinel.com.

Nearly all of the web history from the computer assigned to DesJarlais had been wiped clean.

With few exceptions, the history from his computer in Miller's office only listed sites visited on June 3 — his last day working there. Among those he frequented are sites connected to his campaign for the Marana School Board, such as the site of the Pima County School Superintendent, seeking information on the number of signatures required on nominating petitions.

Although DesJarlais needs to turn in only 255 valid signatures by the August 10 deadline and has been a candidate for months, he posted on Republican Facebook pages last week seeking petition gathers and offering to pay $1 per signature.

The other campaign the non-city resident is behind — the effort to put a measure on the ballot that would change Tucson's City Charter to ward-only elections — has not been active, with little apparent public activity to gather the 9,241 required signatures by July 6.

Falkenhead revisited

Last Friday, the "Herald" website suddenly reappeared, with a different Wordpress template and now flagged as the "AZ Herald," but with the same URL.

And DesJarlais was now displaying his real name on it, instead of an alias.

He posted a short news story cribbed from other sources about U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, posting links on Facebook and Twitter, and his personal Facebook page. An email sent from the domain Friday morning bore his name and requested records about Valadez and his office.

In the afternoon, DesJarlais sent out an email claiming that he purchased the site from a previous owner on June 1.

DesJarlais did not respond early Friday afternoon to phone calls or online messages seeking comment on the resurrection of the website. He emailed reporters, discussing his actions in the third person, that "Mr. DesJarlais purchased the domain 'azdailyherald.com' from Google Domains and acquired ownership from the previous owner, who had agreed to relinquish it."

Much as he declined to identify claimed third parties involved with the Herald on previous occasions, DesJarlais provided no name or contact information for the supposed "previous owner."

He claimed in an emailed response to a query that the transaction was made anonymously. "I contacted the editor@azdailyherald.com and they sent me the code to transfer the site," he said.

The Herald domain name was registered on May 7, with its owner masked from disclosure through private registration. That registration was updated June 1, although what data was updated remains hidden from public view. An update does not necessarily indicate any change in ownership. For instance, the registration information for TucsonSentinel.com was updated on May 25, but our website did not change ownership.

In one of DesJarlais' most revealing errors in the whole tangled mess, a mailing address provided on the updated site was identical to one associated with a Mailchimp email newsletter account that was linked to the previous iteration of the Herald site. When asked about his use of a P.O. box, DesJarlais said it "looks more professional than a home address."

The day after TucsonSentinel.com reported that the same address had been used for both the supposed Falken/Dalton version of the website and the one that DesJarlais had publicly associated himself with, the former aide sent the confession to his ex-boss.

"I rebooted the site, buying it from myself, hoping that perhaps people would think there was no way I was originally behind it," he wrote. "Such a plan seemed good in my head but of course backfired."

DesJarlais did not address the smoking-gun connection of having used the same P.O. box for both editions of the site.

DesJarlais told Miller, in the email she waited two days to release, that "nothing has instilled such admiration in me for you, when you stood by and defended me, even when others turned against me, and how even now, you still maintain my innocence until proven guilty."

"My lying and cover-ups, although never excusable, were done out of my fear that I could lose my job with you," he said.

"If he was involved, I want him prosecuted," Miller said in a phone interview Friday, after DesJarlais had publicly relaunched the site but prior to his emailed confession. "I don't want to convict him ahead of time, but things are not looking good for him."

The District 1 Republican said that she had no involvement with the site, and believed DesJarlais when he told her that he was not behind it.

"That's why I had him file that FBI report," she said. Miller said she told her aide that it would be a crime to file a false report.

Indeed, filing a false complaint with the federal government could be a crime, under 18 USC 1001 — the same statute that sent Martha Stewart to prison.

Miller said Friday, before DesJarlais began posting as the Herald again, that "I have not yet heard from the FBI."

"If he was involved, I would be very, very disappointed," she said before one of her aides cut short a brief interview last Tuesday.

Miller has repeatedly described the situation as involving criminal activities, saying that someone has been "interfering with a government office" and "attempting to influence an election."

Miller said she did not contact the Pima County Sheriff's Department about her allegations because her office is located "in the city." She said last Tuesday that she had not contacted the Tucson Police Department because she did not know if they investigated online crimes.

After I provided her with a contact for the head of TPD's cyber unit, Miller said Friday she had called and left a message with that officer, who would not be available to meet her until Monday.

Pima County officials said last month they'll conduct an internal review of the matter if there are no criminal investigations taking place. Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry asked Sheriff Nanos to determine if there was a federal probe into the matter as a result of Miller and DesJarlais' complaints. If not, Nanos was asked to determine if a local criminal investigation was warranted. Huckelberry said last month that an internal administrative investigation would be done to determine if county resources were improperly used if law enforcement was not already looking into the matter.

DesJarlais told Miller in his email that he would contact Dalton, Closen and DeMarco to "explain the situation to them." He did not mention any intention to contact any of the other politicians he attempted to solicit comments from under the pretense of being a reporter.

"As for the media, I can either respond to them directly with an explanation or you can go to them and explain what happened," DesJarlais told Miller.

DesJarlais did not contact the media with an apology or explanation. Miller did not contact reporters, releasing the email to a political blog that purports to be a news website, where the "heartbreaking confession" was posted along with a ranting jeremiad that called the press who pursued the story "vultures" and "hyenas ... who should be indicted by the public."

After reporters requested the email, her office provided paper copies of it, with the sending and receiving email addresses blacked out.

Lawyers and money

Miller has delayed providing public records that could shed light on DesJarlais' connections to the site and any potential involvement by her and her staff. Records were first requested by TucsonSentinel.com nearly four weeks ago. She has also attempted to improperly bill both the Sentinel and the Arizona Daily Star thousands of dollars for records, and declined to make them available electronically — as was requested.

She has also declined to make records available for inspection in person, as required by Arizona state law, and has announced that she would not turn over any records until her demands for payment were met.

"When they pay the fee, the emails will be turned over," she said.

Arizona state law clearly prohibits charging anything for records that are inspected in person — and also bars charging anything if a member of the public makes their own copy of a document using their own equipment.

Despite the obvious conflict of interest for an elected official to be redacting records requested from her office, Miller has said she was using a marker to black out information on the printed-out copies of emails herself.

Miller billed the Star $1,171.80 for emails, and said that the records that have not been provided to TucsonSentinel.com would cost $1,199.45. Both news outlets have informed county officials that we will not pay for long-delayed records that should be readily provided at minimal cost in an electronic format.

TucsonSentinel.com has repeatedly asked for the current physical location of the files, and when they will be made available for public inspection. We have yet to receive a meaningful reply.

Both TucsonSentinel.com and the Star, as well as representatives of other news outlets, have stated we are willing to press our case in court to prompt the full disclosure of records as required by state law.

The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to discuss the records issue at their meeting next week.

What did they know, and when did they know it?

Between the confessions, false claims, various emails from various real and fake parties denying involvement in the situation, and Miller's delay in releasing records, the "Herald" situation prompts plenty of questions that haven't been answered.

Among them (although you probably have some more of your own at this point):

Who was the "political friend" who told Crawford and Closen that DesJarlais was behind the "Herald"?

How was that person already aware of the connection?

What did Miller, or any of the other members of her staff, know about DesJarlais' pretending to be a reporter to burnish his boss's reputation — and when did they know it?

Why did DesJarlais file an FBI report knowing that it contained false allegations?

Will Dalton sue, and what might that cost the taxpayers?

What is in those emails that has Miller stalling their release?

Why did DesJarlais persist in adding layers of lies to his tangled tale, even as reporters had readily connected him to the site because of his online alias, the posted photograph of the supervisors and, most concretely, the continued use of the same P.O. box?

Will Pima County fix its public records policies to eliminate obvious conflicts of interest and make its practices conform with the spirit and letter of state law?

What the hell was DesJarlais trying to accomplish, anyway?

Gone catfishing

Making up a fake country, as DesJarlais did in his online life, is fine for a hobby, but journalism experts raise their eyebrows when a government employee conjures up a purported news site.

"If he's creating a website and trying to hide his identity, while he's promoting an elected official whom he's beholden to ... that's deceptive," said David Cuillier, the director of the University of Arizona School of Journalism, in an interview last month, prior to DesJarlais admitting any connection to the site.

"If that's the case, he's not acting as a journalist," said Cuillier, the former head of the national Society of Professional Journalists, which sets the ethical standards for the industry. "People have a hard enough time deciding who to trust."

"We have a long history of people expressing themselves under pseudonyms," Cuillier said, "but he's not being a journalist — he's not independent — if he's doing this for his boss."

Winchester, who's challenging Miller in the GOP primary in District 1, said when the DesJarlais/Herald connections were first reported by TucsonSentinel.com that he was "not surprised" by the evident links between the Miller staffer and the impersonation of a reporter.

"The Miller camp has already taken actions like threatening my volunteers and making false accusations against me to the Attorney General's Office, but this is a new low," he said at the time.

Winchester is among the candidates who was emailed by Falken, asking for responses to questions about Miller's outline for a road repair plan.

That email, sent May 15, asked in part, "do you agree with Supervisor Miller's solution or do you have your own solution to fix Pima County roads, and if so, what would that be?" It was signed with Falken's name, styling him as "Senior Reporter/Chief Editor," and sent from editor@azdailyherald.com.

Despite the many lingering questions even at this point, Winchester and Carroll have repeatedly said the evidence points to the Miller camp attempting to "catfish" political opponents, but that nobody took the bait.

A worked-up Carroll, with whom Miller has repeatedly clashed despite their both being Republicans, said last month, "You've got a fake reporter, saying he's working for a fake newspaper."

"They're trying to distract the public from the manipulation that's going on with the Republican primary," said Carroll, who announced earlier this year he wouldn't seek another term.

Winchester said he considered the situation to be "using taxpayer-paid county employees to create an elaborate scheme, pretending to be a journalist for the purposes of deceitfully getting information regarding my campaign. This is just the latest in a long line of bizarre Ally antics, such as pretending to fall into a pothole, (and) calling 911 on real reporters."

- 30 -
have your say   

2 comments on this story

2
542 comments
Jun 14, 2016, 11:42 am
-1 +2

@Bret Linden,

His layer of lies and attempts to distract may be convoluted, and his motivation is perhaps yet be revealed in the public records that are being withheld, but it was a simple matter to determine who was behind the website even before DesJarlais had posted that photograph on Facebook. A genius? Nope.

1
1768 comments
Jun 14, 2016, 11:13 am
-2 +1

DesJarlais is a genius. This…whatever he did, is so horribly convoluted and hard to follow that it won’t hurt Miller, and no one can investigate it because doing so will inevitably make their head hurt.

Next thing you know he’ll be stealing $230m from downtown gentrification efforts.

Sorry, we missed your input...

You must be logged in or register to comment

Click image to enlarge

DesJarlais, in a Youtube video in his role as 'President Falken.'


Categories

news, politics & government, crime & safety, media & journalism, sci/tech, local, arizona, breaking