Governor Jan Brewer and other political leaders continue to react to an ABC15 investigation that found Sheriff Paul Babeu was Headmaster at a boarding school with a long history of abuse.
Multiple former students and Babeu’s own sister also told ABC15 that Babeu had a relationship with a 17-year-old male student.
Brewer said that after she read our report Monday night, she "certainly was disappointed”.
“It was a pretty brutal blow if it is true,” Brewer said. "I certainly think that publicly it has done some serious damage to his campaign."
Pinal County Supervisor Pete Rios also responded to our investigation. He renewed his call for Babeu to resign.
“I asked for his resignation even before this story broke,” Rios said in an email to ABC15. “But I had no evidence like your channel got.”
On Monday, State Sen. Ron Gould also called for Babeu to drop out of his congressional race and resign as sheriff.
From 1999 to 2001, Babeu was headmaster and executive director for the DeSisto School in Stockbridge, Mass.
The ABC15 Investigators found that the school was shut down after a state investigation. It began during Babeu’s tenure. The documents show that the school was not licensed.
Other allegations detailed repeated instances of physical and sexual abuse.
Read more about DeSisto’s controversial disciplinary methods.
Babeu has turned down ABC15’s repeated interview requests.
However, his attorneys released a statement that said, “Sheriff Babeu never had a sexual relationship with a student. A student has never lived with Sheriff Babeu either. ”
Our investigation comes as Babeu deals with another controversy that involves his former Mexican boyfriend who claims the sheriff threatened to deport him .
Last week, polls showed Babeu’s campaign has lost support.
According to Yellow Sheet polls:
On January 18, Babeu had a double digit lead in the race against Ron Gould and Paul Gosar with 29 percent.
On February 20, Babeu fell to 25 percent and Gosar has climbed ahead with 30 percent.
Sheriff Babeu will not appear at an upcoming event in Oklahoma. Every year, the Tulsa Police honor officers for acts of heroism. It is called the Hero's Banquet.
Sheriff Babeu was asked to be a presenter at this year's event. But, a spokesperson for the Tulsa Police Department told us there has been a change in plans.
"We were notified of a potential scandal involving the sheriff, and this is about our officers…we didn't want to do anything that would detract from the focus on our officers".
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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