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Tempe prosecutors and police: Felony charges should be considered for bear spray incident

The Tempe Prosecutor's Office and Tempe police say felony charges should be considered for the leader of a far-right group who attacked abortion rights protesters with bear spray earlier this month. 

City prosecutors Monday dismissed without prejudice two misdemeanor charges — assault and disorderly conduct — against AZ Patriots leader Jennifer Harrison. She used the bear spray at a protest July 3 near Mill Avenue.

The city has jurisdiction to prosecute only misdemeanor cases, but Maricopa County can prosecute felonies.  

According to a release from the city, “Dismissing ‘without prejudice’ means that the case could be prosecuted for misdemeanor charges by Tempe if Maricopa County declines to prosecute for one or more felonies.”

Tom Maxedon was the host of KJZZ’s Weekend Edition from 2017 to 2024.