Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell Announces Jail Time for Former Attorney Found Guilty of Abuse

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell (R) announced Friday that former prosecutor and defense attorney Edward Maldonado, 48, will face six years of jail time for sexual abuse.

“Justice prevailed today for the victims of a lawyer who took advantage of his position and his stature to sexually abuse and take advantage of women in the legal profession,” said Mitchell. “I am very proud of this office for standing up for these victims and helping them find justice.”

Maldonado was found guilty of one count of sexual assault, a class two felony, and one count of sexual abuse, a class five felony. Aside from the six years in jail, he will also have to register as a lifetime sex offender and be placed on probation for ten years following his release in 2029. He has a wife and two teenage children and was previously the president of Los Abogados, a law organization within the Hispanic community.

The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office (MCAO) also shared that three victims spoke in court about being abused by Maldonado.

“The courage these victims have shown by reporting this abuse and testifying against this assailant is to be commended. Today’s sentencing is the culmination of the hard work of this office to bring justice no matter who the defendant is,” Mitchell said.

As reported by the Arizona Republic, this verdict is eight years in the making. In 2014, Maldonado assaulted Ilya Smith in the back of a car after leaving a bar. Smith was a colleague at Los Abogados. Another woman who claims to be a victim of Maldonado was a law student at the time and was reportedly drunk when he offered her a ride to his office. She woke up in the early morning with her clothes off, although Maldonado claimed he removed them because she threw up on herself.

The Arizona State Bar conducted an investigation into the allegations against Maldonado, which resulted in his being disbarred in 2018. Separately, Phoenix detectives investigated the 2014 assault and delivered the case to the MCAO in 2015. However, the office reportedly sat on the case for three years until restarting the investigation after Maldonado’s disbarment. He went to trial in August 2022, but the jury could not come to a unanimous conclusion, leading to another trial in January. At the new trial, Maldonado, his wife, and his lawyer proclaimed his innocence, but it was not enough to convince the new jury that he did not commit the crime, leading to his sentence.

Furthermore, this was the second of two announcements Mitchell made Friday. The first regarded, Diego Miguel Garcia, 23, who was indicted by the Maricopa County Grand Jury for crimes involving a child.

As reported by AZ Family, on February 1st, police and paramedics responded to reports of an injured child at an apartment complex. The one-year-old child had injuries to his head, back, and abdomen and died in the hospital the next day. Garcia was the boyfriend of the child’s mother, and the boy was left in his care while the mother worked at night. He gave conflicting stories of how the child received the injuries.

“Children are some of the most vulnerable in our community and when a child dies at the hands of an adult, this office will seek justice for the tragic loss of life,” said Mitchell.

The grand jury indicted Garcia with first-degree murder and child abuse.

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Neil Jones is a reporter for The Arizona Sun Times and The Star News Network. Follow Neil on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Rachel Mitchell” by Rachel Mitchell for Maricopa County Attorney. Background Photo “Courtroom” by Karen Neoh. CC BY 2.0.


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