Sr. Reporter: Shawna Forde, 'Blonde on the Border'

2010-05-04T00:15:00Z Sr. Reporter: Shawna Forde, 'Blonde on the Border'Tim Steller Arizona Daily Star
May 04, 2010 12:15 am  • 

Laine Lawless says she will be out soon with her book on Shawna Forde, which Lawless is calling "Blonde on the Border."

Lawless, as you probably know by now, is a longtime anti-illegal-immigration activist in Southern Arizona and now Phoenix. She has come into conflict with some Minuteman-type organizations, often over perceived sexism. And she views Shawna Forde's treatment as a case of sexism and racism. Hence, "Blonde on the Border."

Prosecutors have listed her as a possible witness in their case against Forde.

Lawless founded the web site justiceforshawnaforde.com and has repeatedly accused investigators and the news media of racially profiling and otherwise mistreating Forde. Forde is charged with two counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder in a May 30 home invasion in Arivaca, in which a nine year old girl, Brisenia Flores, and her father Raúl were killed.

Lawless, when living in California, also wrote erotica featuring the TV character Xena, Warrior Princess. I couldn't help but be reminded of that after reading the opening paragraph Lawless has posted on her book's site:

"It was an odd kind of situation, meeting Shawna Forde while she was with Jason Bush, who had a bullet wound. Over the first couple of months of 2009, I had only talked to her on the phone and emailed her. I remember saying how glad I was to meet her, giving her a hug, and feeling her hug me back."

Where is this going, you ask? I could imagine several directions, but in fact, Lawless is describing an incident that she had withheld in her early interviews related to Shawna Forde. Originally, Chuck Stonex did not disclose, and Laine Lawless did not mention, that she was present when Stonex went to bandage Bush's wounds in an Arivaca home. (See linked story)

Stonex has said he drove to Arivaca after being told one of his fellow members of Minutemen American Defense had been shot by a smuggler. Investigators say it was the only surviving victim of the May 30 home invasion who managed to shoot Bush after he had killed her husband and daughter.

Lawless also makes mention in her excerpt of a 150-page "media release." What she's referring to, just so you know, are police reports that the Star and other news outlets formally requested under the state's public records law. They were the initial police reports from the first day or two after the murders.

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About this blog

When you're a reporter digging deep, you turn up a lot of dirt. But that doesn't mean you can put all the good dirt in the story.

I've found myself with a lot of extra, good dirt in my new role as senior reporter (hence, Señor Reporter), writing primarily for the Arizona Daily Star's Sunday paper.

Check in often, and let's see what we can turn up.

Contact Tim Steller at (520) 807-8427 or tsteller@tucson.com

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