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Kris Mayes vows to prosecute suspects who threatened officials during election

The Democrat remains ahead in Arizona's attorney general race, which will soon be subjected to a recount due to how close the results ended up.
Credit: 12News

PHOENIX — Democrat Kris Mayes said Tuesday she will investigate and prosecute individuals who threatened public officials during the recent election if the upcoming recount results in her favor for the attorney general's race. 

A day after the final election results placed Mayes ahead of Republican Abe Hamadeh by only 510 votes, the Democratic candidate held a press conference and vowed to use the AG's office to hold individuals accountable who threatened local officials. 

Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone said Monday that his agency is investigating alleged threats made during Arizona's mid-term election. One such alleged threat resulted in a Maricopa County supervisor being temporarily moved to a new location on Election Day. 

"These threats will be fully investigated and they will be prosecuted if warranted," Mayes said Tuesday.

Though threats against elected officials have typically been prosecuted by federal agencies, Mayes said there are state laws that could be applied to these types of offenses. 

The exact wording of Arizona's laws involving threats or intimidation can be found here. Arizona also has laws prohibiting someone from stopping an election officer conduct their duties. 

Mayes said Tuesday she's recently begun to have conversations with the staff of Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich and will spend the next few weeks focusing on the transition process. 

Because Mayes won by less than 0.5%, Arizona law requires a recount be conducted before the presumed winner takes office. 

Mayes said she's confident the recount results will still show her as the winner. 

If the Democrat is declared the next state attorney general, she promised to make the office more transparent by holding regular press conferences and public meetings. 

The full press briefing can be viewed below:

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