by David Safier
Here's a short summary of information about Russell Pearce and his son, Joshua, from today's Phoenix New Times:
- In 1974, Russell Pearce, "then a young sheriff's deputy, busted down the door of his first wife Karen. Karen and Russell were divorced the same year. No charges were ever filed in that incident."
- In 1980, Pearce's wife, LuAnn, filed a marriage dissolution petition "which alleged physical abuse at the hands of her husband." From the petition: "Further, the husband, RUSSELL KEITH PEARCE, is possessed of a violent temper, and has from time to time hit and shoved the wife, the last time being on February 3 , when he grabbed the wife by the throat and threw her down." Russell and LuAnn reconciled and are still married.
- Russell's son, Joshua, was arrested for a DUI in 2006. His wife and 5 day old son were in the car. He said he was a regular marijuana user. "Josh Pearce also told officers that he took Xanax for panic attacks. He later tested positive for THC, Oxycodone, and Oxymorphone."
- This December 10, Joshua's nine day old daughter was in the hospital with a skull fracture. Hospital staff said "the parents' explanation of how the fracture may have occurred did not jibe with the severity of the injury. . . . the child had been in Joshua Pearce's care at the time." The Mesa Police Department investigated allegations of possible child abuse but will not file charges because, "At this time we do not have sufficient probable cause to charge Mr. Pearce in this case."