A civilian employee of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office is on administrative leave following his arrest in a child abuse case.
In a statement, Sheriff Paul Penzone said Deputy Service Aide Desman Emmanuel Brown, 23, of Avondale, was arrested by the Goodyear Police Department Wednesday on charges of child abuse and aggravated assault.
On Aug. 25, Goodyear police responded to Sunrise Preschool, 13201 W. Thomas Road, Goodyear in reference to an injury observed on a 7-month-old infant. Police said it was described as a large bruise across the left side of the face.
According to court documents, Desman Brown tried to blame Sunrise staff for the injury, but video surveillance throughout the day never showed the infant with visible injuries while inside the facility.
After a thorough investigation and multiple interviews on Wednesday, Sept. 2, police arrested Desman Brown on charges of child abuse and aggravated assault. Police believe the injury was caused by Mr. Brown striking the face of his 7-month-old daughter and causing the large bruise to her face. However, he denied causing the injury to his daughter, records state.
Mr. Brown was released on own recognizance and is on leave pending criminal and internal investigations.
“As has always been my position, I am intolerant of actions which are in conflict with our values in the law,” Mr. Penzone stated. “Protection of children has always been a top priority and I expect our employees to be leaders in this community in keeping children safe. Any actions in conflict with these expectations will not be tolerated and all people should held to the same standard of conduct under the law. I appreciate the actions of our law enforcement partners in their efforts to protect children.”
Mr. Penzone said he will take appropriate action should the allegations be substantiated.
Deputy Service Aides are non-sworn law enforcement aides that respond to lower level priority calls for service to the community, MCSO said. The performance of these functions allow sworn deputy sheriffs to respond to priority 1 and 2 calls for service in a timely manner.
Deputy Service Aides respond to priority 3 calls for service and other calls determined necessary by a sworn supervisor. Aides are not law enforcement officers and do not have the powers of arrest, nor carry a weapon.