by David Mendez
When one scans the Pinal County Sheriff's Office's website, one finds a wealth of information—generally about the most recent appearance Sheriff Paul Babeu has made on national television (see the CNN video embedded on the site's front page, for an example).
When one then checks the About PCSO page, just below Smilin' Paul's face, they find this:
Interestingly enough, if one were to head to PinalSheriff.com, they'd find this:
That's odd. It seems that the Pinal County Sheriff's Office is advertising a site that is nothing but a domain-name landing page—surely this is just an oversight on their part, right?
Well, a WHOIS search got us to the bottom of this: the owner is a Mr. William Conley, who purchased the domain back in 2009.
Conley doesn't care that the Sheriff's Office has used the domain name that he purchased — as far as he's concerned, "it's a non-issue." He simply saw that the domain was available and snapped it up. If the county wants to take it up with him, they're perfectly welcome to, he says.
A call to the Pinal Sheriff's Office has yet to be returned.
Admittedly, this isn't a big deal at all—I mean, people goof up on websites constantly.
But it's interesting to note that no one at the Pinal Sheriff's Office bothered to look into a domain name that's been controlled by the same person since 2009 before pasting it up on their website...or, if they've had that image up prior to August 2009, that they haven't bothered to see if the domain was available since.