A to Z

DPS investigating suspicious substance sent to Karen Fann

By: - May 20, 2021 12:59 pm
Karen Fann

Senate President Karen Fann. Photo by Gage Skidmore | Flckr/CC BY-SA 2.0

The Department of Public Safety is investigating after someone sent a suspicious substance to Senate President Karen Fann.

Around 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, an aide in the Senate president’s office opened a letter addressed to Fann and noticed a “small amount of substance” in the mailing, according to Senate GOP spokesman Mike Philipsen. 

Sen. Warren Petersen, R-Gilbert, wrote on Twitter that the substance was an “unidentified white powder.”

Philipsen said DPS’s hazardous materials team responded to the Senate around 6:30 p.m. and tested the substance. He said the tests came back negative, though neither Philipsen nor DPS would say specifically what the substance was tested for.

DPS spokesman Bart Graves said the investigation is ongoing.

The suspicious package comes amid a controversial recount and audit that Fann, R-Prescott, ordered of the 2020 general election in Maricopa County. The audit has been embroiled in a number of controversies, including the audit team leader’s support for bogus election fraud conspiracy theories, concerns about the auditors’ lack of qualifications, questionable procedures, the use of the audit to probe far-fetched conspiracy theories and outside funding by undisclosed pro-Trump donors to pay for the audit.

“The personal attacks on (Fann) by some media and others is truly disturbing. If you don’t agree with the policy, disagree with it but no need to attack her personally. Now this. Today someone sent an unidentified white powder to her office. Not OK folks. DPS is investigating,” Petersen tweeted Wednesday night.

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Jeremy Duda
Jeremy Duda

Jeremy Duda is a Phoenix native and began his career in journalism in 2003 after graduating from the University of Arizona. Jeremy Duda previously served as the Mirror's associate Editor. Prior to joining the Arizona Mirror, he worked at the Arizona Capitol Times, where he spent eight years covering the Governor's Office and two years as editor of the Yellow Sheet Report. Before that, he wrote for the Hobbs News-Sun of Hobbs, NM, and the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah. Jeremy is also the author of the history book “If This Be Treason: the American Rogues and Rebels Who Walked the Line Between Dissent and Betrayal.”