The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office has declined to file charges against Pima County Sheriff Chris Nanos relating to an alleged assault in February.
On March 7, Sgt. Kevin Kubitskey told TPD detectives he had been assaulted by Nanos on Feb. 26 at the Fraternal Order of Police lodge, police reports say.
On Friday, Tucson police released the full report into the aggravated assault complaint filed against Nanos
The incident occurred at a question-and-answer session with members of the Pima County Deputy Sheriff’s Association and the Fraternal Order of Police, in anticipation of the upcoming election.
Kubitskey told police that at the end of the meeting, he approached Nanos to speak privately.
During the conversation, which became heated, Nanos poked him on the chest multiple times, then slapped him on the arm, the police report said.
Police interviewed Deputy Jeremy Butcher, who said he’d seen the confrontation and witnessed Nanos poking Kubitskey, the report said.
Prior to his interview, Butcher signed a notarized statement confirming Kubitskey’s version of the events.
Several other sheriff’s department employees who attended the meeting were also interviewed, and told detectives they didn’t witness the confrontation, the report said.
Leading up to the alleged assault, Kubitskey and Nanos had previous confrontations in the cafeteria at headquarters, according to the report.
When interviewed by police the day after the complaint was filed, Nanos said that prior to the conversation it had become obvious that Kubitskey was mad at him.
Nanos said that for that reason, he put his hand on Kubitskey’s arm or chest and said that their feelings for one another shouldn’t affect the members of the department, the report said.
Kubitskey agreed and told Nanos that he wasn’t mad at Nanos, then Nanos patted him on the shoulder and left.
Nanos confirmed the report of previous confrontations in the cafeteria, but said he’d already apologized, the report said.
Police also interviewed Fraternal Order of Police president Sgt. Tyke Manoleas, who said Kubitskey told him he’d reported the assault to the FBI.
Detectives downgraded the complaint before sending the investigation to the prosecutor’s office.
“Today I was informed by our union attorney that the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office has declined to file charges, despite the fact that there was a witness to the event,” Kubitskey said. “Any investigator knows that if you have an individual yelling and touching someone, that fits the statute for assault.”
Kubitskey said he reported the event to the county Board of Supervisors, and also told the FBI, since he had been notified that he was a witness in an investigation against Nanos.
The Star previously reported that the FBI was investigating members of the department, including Nanos, for possible violations relating to use of public funds.
“I knew there was no assault,” Nanos said. “I hope Kevin didn’t create this in his head, but for whatever reason, he decided he was assaulted.”
Nanos said that he thinks Kubitskey is a good man, has known him for years and even visited him in the hospital when he suffered a blood clot years ago.
“I welcome the opportunity to sit down with Kevin and discuss this, but he’ll have to come to me,” Nanos said. “I just want to move on, and I hope someday we both can.”
Nanos previously told the Star that he believed the complaint to be politically motivated, as Kubitskey had previously filed complaints against him with various departments and agencies.
Since Kubitskey took over as president of the deputies’ union in September, negotiations over deputy and corrections officer pay have fallen apart, Nanos said in March.
The Star sent a public records request for the report to the police department on March 7, but was only given a portion of the initial report, which lacked details.
In the following weeks the Star’s attorney, Dan Barr, sent multiple letters to Lisa Judge, the police department’s lawyer, in an attempt to obtain the document.
It took more than a month before police released the full report.
Contact reporter Caitlin Schmidt at email@example.com or 573-4191. On Twitter: @caitlincschmidt