Friday, December 2, 2011
Shannon Sullivan began her campaign to recall county prosecutor Steve Tucker the same way she began her campaign to oust former Spokane mayor Jim West: with a visit to the county elections office.
This time, the effort was to chase out a prosecutor whom she accuses of malfeasance and a host of other ethical missteps.
"I'm not singling out the Creach [incident] or the Zehm [incident] ... or any of those issues," she told a group of journalists gathered to watch her file the petition, referring to two high-profile death at the hands of law enforcement. "No one is above the law."
Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton accepted her petition, which will have to be certified by the state attorney general before it can be put out for signatures. Sullivan and her supporters will then have to collect 42,788 signatures in order to get the recall initiative on the ballot.
Tucker is out of the country on vacation and unavailable for comment.
Sullivan's petition laid out four allegations against Tucker.
She alleges that Tucker told a political rally that he would not prosecute public employees, and that as a result he failed to prosecute a former Spokane firefighter and the police officers involved in the 2006 death of Otto Zehm.
Her fourth allegation was that Tucker improperly brokered a plea deal with a man accused of seven felonies in a shooting and reduced the charges to two misdemeanors.
Citing a Spokesman-Review article, Sullivan says the deal amounted to malfeasance, as did Tucker's refusal to explain the bargain to Spokane County District Court Judge Debra Hayes.
"I think the tipping point was when he refused to show up in Judge Hayes's court," Sullivan says. "I wasn't very confident with anything at that point except that I have to do something."