(Phoenix, Ariz. -- Oct. 19, 2009) Attorney General Terry Goddard announced that Patrick Chorpenning Sr., 63, of Peoria, who served as director of the Arizona Department of Veterans Services (AZDVS) between 1999 and 2007, was sentenced today by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Susan Brnovich to two years of supervised probation, and ordered to pay $421,351 in restitution.
Chorpenning pleaded guilty to conflict of interest and solicitation to commit a violation of the procurement code, both Class 6 felonies.
The conflict of interest charge pertains to the hiring of his wife while he was director of the veterans agency in a position he created for her. He also was accused of helping obtain an unjustified increase in her salary. His wife was employed at the agency for more than three years.
The solicitation charge relates to his improper payment of $382,756 of AZDVS funds to a public relations company, Go Media of Phoenix, by circumventing the State Procurement Code from 2002 to 2005.
The $421,351 in restitution represents the unauthorized money paid to Go Media in violation of the Procurement Code, plus an additional $38,595 in unauthorized expenditures of agency money for employee meals and gifts.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Theodore Campagnolo. The case was investigated by the Arizona Office of the Auditor General and the Special Investigations Section of the Attorney General's Office.
A copy of Chorpenning’s photo is attached. For more information, contact Mika Marquart at (602) 542-7714.