Although we don’t always notice it in our day-to-day lives, there are dangerous gangs at work in Maricopa County. Because these gangs have learned how to navigate the criminal justice system and manipulate it to their own advantage, gang cases are often complex and difficult to prosecute.
The Maricopa County Attorney's Office (MCAO) values the role of collaborative partnerships in combating gang-related crime. Among these vital alliances is the Arizona Gang Investigators Association (AZGIA), which serves as a critical resource for law enforcement professionals in their pursuit of safer communities. Today, we take pride in spotlighting the accomplishments of MCAO Deputy County Attorney Dan Fisher, who has been honored as the recipient of the 2023 Gang Prosecutor of the Year award by AZGIA.
Fisher joined MCAO 11-years ago, straight out of law school. For the past eight years, he has been an integral part of the Gang Bureau. The collaborative spirit and challenges associated with gang-related cases, as well as their profound impact on the community, have solidified his commitment to this important work.
Fisher was nominated by colleagues who observed his exceptional dedication during two trials involving the prosecution of members of the West Side City Crips, one of the largest gangs in the Valley. These trials involved two gang members with extensive criminal histories. They both held high-ranking positions within the gang, and had terrorized numerous victims throughout their gang involvement.
Both trials involved multiple challenges: disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, changes in defense representation, and the reluctance of witnesses to testify. Despite these obstacles, Fisher’s efforts ultimately resulted in guilty verdicts for both defendants, and the likelihood of life sentences for each.
Fisher emphasized there was no doubt they would have continued to inflict harm on others had they not been brought to justice.
Dan Fisher's dedication to the wellbeing of our community truly embodies the essence of the Gang Prosecutor of the Year Award. His perseverance, combined with the Gang Bureau’s hard work, stands as a beacon of hope against the threats posed by gang activity. Their efforts provide a lifeline to vulnerable individuals who might otherwise fall victim to further violence.
Congratulations on this well-deserved award, Dan!