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Transcripts of Arizona Game and Fish employees interviewed during the Department’s internal Macho B investigation are available for public review

Posted in: News Media
Apr 16, 2010
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The Arizona Game and Fish Department will post on its public Web site redacted transcripts of interviews that were conducted with a number of Department employees as part of the Department’s ongoing internal administrative investigation into the events surrounding the 2009 capture, recapture and euthanization of the jaguar known as Macho B.

To read the transcripts, click here to go to the Department’s web site.
 
The Department received a public records request for the transcripts in the aftermath of its March 19, 2010 decision to dismiss an employee for actions the employee made in the weeks following the initial capture of the jaguar. The Department has previously withheld from public release the interview transcripts due to the likelihood that release would either harm the Department’s ongoing investigation or the concurrent federal investigation being conducted by the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service. 

It is the Department’s understanding that the federal investigators have now finished their investigation and turned their materials over to the U.S. Attorney’s office. The Department’s investigation is ongoing and it may require additional or follow-up interviews of Department employees once the results of the federal investigation are made public. The redacted portions provide details that if known could influence or taint any employee’s future testimony. In the interest of ensuring a thorough and uncompromised investigation, the Department cannot at this time release the redacted portions of the transcripts.

Because the redaction process takes some time, the Department will post transcripts as the redacted copies become available. The first transcripts that are being posted are those of the interviews with Thorry Smith. Transcripts will subsequently be posted as they become available of the interviews with the following employees: Ron Thompson, Terry Johnson, Michelle Crabb, Bill Van Pelt, Dean Treadwell, David Grandmaison, Kirby Bristow, Eric Gardner, Tom Jones, Chantal O’Brien, Tim Snow and William Carroll. The Department estimates it will take about three to four weeks for all of the transcripts to be redacted and posted.

Unredacted copies of the transcripts will be posted after the Department has completed its internal investigation. 

The Department has also posted to its public Web site all Department photographs made during the initial capture and recapture of Macho B. All photos are being published in their original and unedited form. View the more than 300 photos here.
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