Drug Bureau

The Drug Bureau is responsible for prosecuting all drug cases, from simple possession to complex trafficking cases, and all drug-related violent crimes. The Drug Bureau works in partnership with local, state and federal agencies in Pinal County to protect the community from problems generated by the use and sale of illegal drugs. The use of illegal drugs are at the root of numerous other crimes in the community.  Drug addiction underlies many thefts, burglaries, and other property crimes to fund the habit. Substance abuse is a significant factor in domestic violence, child neglect, violent crimes, and overdose deaths. Overdoses, fueled by opioids, are at crisis levels. Drug sales and trafficking also result in violent crimes and funds gang activities in the community.

Drug Bureau prosecutors follow a two-prong approach in addressing this problem. First, prosecutors seek to help the non-violent drug user overcome their drug addition by mandating participation in treatment programs through the Pinal County Attorney’s Office Diversion Program or as a term of probation under the supervision of the Pinal County Adult Probation Office.  Drug Bureau prosecutors are also assigned as team members for two Pinal County Superior Court Drug Court Programs designed to address the serious addiction issues underlying the criminal behavior of repeat non-violent offenders. Finally, for drug dealers and traffickers who poison our neighborhoods by spreading illegal drug use, the Drug Bureau prosecutors seek prison sentences to protect the community and deter the spread of drugs within Pinal County.

Major Crimes

The Major Crimes Bureau prosecutes felony offenses involving violent crimes such as first degree murder (including all death penalty cases) and other homicides, aggravated assaults involving serious physical injuries and the use of deadly weapons and dangerous instruments, drive-by shootings, gang-related crimes, serious domestic-violence related felony offenses such as aggravated assaults with strangulation, and sexual crimes such as sexual assault, sexual conduct with a minor, child molestation, sexual exploitation (child pornography), and child sex trafficking.

Major Crimes Bureau attorneys are skilled prosecutors with at least 5 years of felony-level prosecuting experience and extensive specialized training.  Major Crimes Bureau attorneys meet frequently with the County Attorney, Chief Deputy, and other senior prosecutors as part of incident review panels to evaluate homicides and other complex cases on issues such as charging decisions, death penalty notice filings, plea agreements, and circumstances surrounding officer-involved shootings.  The Major Crimes Bureau works with all local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies in Pinal County.

Criminal Division

Pinal County Attorney’s Office Criminal Division has distinct bureaus: Major Crimes Bureau, Trial, Drug Bureau, Juvenile, Appellate, and Justice Court Bureau.

In our bureaus, there are roughly 35 attorneys who handle our cases and another 35 support staff.  Additionally, we have nine investigators who assist in case and trial preparation by locating and serving witnesses and conducting standard and forensic interviews.

In 2018, our trial bureau has prosecuted and closed over 1000 cases.  This group prosecutes burglaries, felony assaults, and vehicular offenses and other non-violent criminal violations.

Over half of all charged felonies involve the possession, sale, manufacturing, or transportation of drugs.  To combat this rampant issues we have a dedicated drug bureau.

Most citizens will hopefully never have involvement in the criminal justice process as a victim, witness or defendant.

Nevertheless, information is provided here to give citizens interested in or needing general knowledge about how our system works and what to expect in the prosecution process.