Don Sorchych My View

JANUARY 19, 2011

Barto and Freeman

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In last week’s Online Sonoran News SB 1034 pre-filed by freshman state Sen. Nancy Barto, R-Dist. 7, was printed in My View. This is identical to HB 2154, which Barto filed while a state representative last year.

This is irresponsible legislation that would cost those living on rural roads millions of dollars. Arizona is a rural state and this legislation, copied by Barto from California statutes, is to satisfy one person, her donor, fundraiser and supporter Gerald (Jerry) Freeman. She showed this bias when she offered to amend HB 2154 to apply to Cave Creek only.

Freeman built a house west of me in 2003 and has an easement across my property to reach his home. In order to get Rural/Metro approval of his house plans, he substantially changed the private extension of Morning Star Road which crosses easements on four road segments.

Freeman filed a lawsuit claiming I should pay for half of the road maintenance and improvements. He failed in mediation and appealed to superior court, were he again lost.
The case is now on appeal.

While he and Barto were quietly promoting HB 2154 in the legislature, he again asked for an additional $35,000 for “improvements.”

When Barto came up for election to the Senate, Freeman held a fundraiser for her and contributed the maximum to her campaign. Rep. Ray Barnes, Rep. Dist. 7, was her opponent and he gave me signs to post, which I did on my road. I have pictures of Freeman removing four signs and two more disappeared overnight.

canfield cartoon
When asked by MCSO deputies, he denied he took them even though MCSO had been provided pictures and a survey which proves the signs were on the road owned by me. It is illegal to lie to a law enforcement officer.

The case was turned over to the Cave Creek Municipal Court and Town Prosecutor Mark Iacovino. There was ample proof that Freeman stole six signs and, therefore, is a thief. But Iacovino let him off with no record if he paid Barnes $90. It is interesting that Ray Barnes has never seen the $90 even though Iacovino settled the case months ago.

Freeman has used his status as LD 7 Republican Precinct Committeeman in discussions with legislators. It is time for LD 7 authorities to look at Freeman’s escapades and see why he should not be allowed to carry the vaunted title. Do Arizona Republicans have no honor?
Several years ago, Thomas Ropp, then with the Arizona Republic, wrote an article about Cave Creek Town Manager Usama Abujbarah. It was definitive and supportive of Abujbarah’s performance and acceptance of the western way of life. Usama is trusted and respected here by most everyone I know.

For some unknown reason, perhaps because I am fond of Abujbarah, without diminishing my role as the government watchdog, Freeman wrote a twisted e-mail about Abujbarah, with attached pages 5 and 6 of Ropp’s article.

Freeman sent this e-mail on Sunday Jan. 2 at 10:56 p.m.
“Did you know any of this?

“I have known for years that we had a Muslim ex convict for a town manager. Did you?
“I am wondering if the council that hired him knew any of this. He was not a citizen when (he) was hired. That seems strange to me. Try going to Jordan and becoming a town Manager without being a citizen … or a Muslim.

“I wonder what was their reasoning for hiring an ex convict and non citizen?

“Did anyone check the prison or courts records to see what he was actually imprisoned for? Or did they just accept this unvetted news article as below?”


We are confident of our knowledge of the Abujbarah family. I attended the family conversion to American citizenship on July 4, 2002 and witnessed their pride as American citizens.

The term ex-con is misleading and obnoxious. Yes, he was incarcerated as a political prisoner and beaten morning and night for three years. These were the days when the United States loved dictators who did what they were told as long as they were not inhibited in their country.

The Monarch of Jordon, King Hussein, ruled with an iron hand and anyone dissident to his rule was jailed. Abujbarah was on death row until Amnesty International was able to gain his release and subsequent visa to America.

Why is it important that Abujbarah is a Muslim? Abujbarah is one who speaks out against Muslims who are terrorists and believes heart and soul in America. Should anyone who is jailed for political purposes, not murder, theft or other anti-society actions be called an ex-con? That is like calling all the jailed dissidents in China or Cuba that are released due to global pressure ex-cons and I have never seen one example of such a slur.

Freeman sent the e-mail to equestrians. And I have yet to contact them and see how they view his message. Although he has horses and a horse trailer about a block long, it will take a long time to become a western cowboy after years in Morton, Illinois as a Caterpillar salesman. He may have wintered in Scottsdale, hardly cowboy city.

But I am hopeful LD 7 members deal with the issue by careful screening of potential Precinct Committeemen.

Breaking news:
The court of appeals ruled on the case on Jan. 13. It is titled “Affirmed in part, denied in part.” The trial court's ruling on "unjust enrichment" in my favor was affirmed while the issue of equitable contribution among joint easement users was decided in Freeman's favor.
My attorney is looking at our various alternatives.