New Lowery recall started

By John Gutekunst
Wednesday, December 1, 2010 10:30 AM MST

Parker resident Joyce Curren has taken out a second recall petition against Sheriff Don Lowery. Curren sent a letter Nov. 15 to the La Paz County Elections Department requesting to withdraw the original petition, which was numbered RC-10-01. The new petition, which Curren took out Nov. 23, is numbered RC 10-02.

The recall organization, the Committee to Recall Don Lowery, will have until March 23, 2011, to gather 1,351 valid signatures on the petition. Curren is listed as the chairperson of the committee. The treasurer is listed as Virginia Schuchman.

Curren originally took out recall petitions in August. The deadline for turning in those petitions was Nov. 29.

The following statement giving the reasons for recalling Lowery was included with the application for the recall papers:

"Lowery hired an attorney after the County Attorney refused to give him permission to do so, without board consent. His attorney is suing the county. The unlawful use of funds has cost taxpayers. These actions and others stated here are constant burdens on the taxpayers.

"Lowery puts his friends in administrative offices when their job description is patrol deputy. This takes safety and security from the public.

"You will see yourself the Sheriff continuously makes conflicting statements, lying and deceiving the board of supervisors, news media, and, moist importantly, the taxpayers. http://sites.google.com/site/recallsherifflow... .

"Lowery covers up criminal activity to protect some officers. He does not have the same playing field for all of his employees.

"He's unable to write his own letter to the editor in the Parker Pioneer in response to his lack of leadership and knowledge. He has to take it from a book. Plagiarism is against the law.

"His friend and confidante, Maj. Rick Paterson, was terminated. There is no paper trail, any investigations or reasons on his termination. Lowery told the paper that Paterson had stepped down. Which is it?

Lowery stated to the Pioneer, "How do I respond to circumstances over which I have little or no control? I have to act and conduct myself in a way that is worthy of the name I have made for myself in a positive manner. Why is it important to do this? It is a commitment to myself, my family and this community; to remain honest, loyal, work hard, remain consistent along with having good moral values and maintain integrity. What to people in the community expect of me-to find better ways to have the sheriff's office find better ways to be financially successful, to produce, train, elevate my personnel to a higher standard. A good leader makes followers good leaders. All the personnel in my office are highly trained and qualified to do their respective jobs. As it says in the Bible '... and God's love turns curses into blessings."

Lowery said it's been a difficult two years since he took office. He's had to maintain a budget, maintain personnel and work with other law enforcement agencies. He said his office has established good relations with agencies like the Bureau of Land Management, the US Border Patrol and the Colorado River Indian Tribes.