Saturday, March 29, 2014
Despite having been found by a federal court to have systematically violated the civil rights in the name of immigration enforcement, Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the Maricopa County (Arizona) Sheriff's Office refuse to go quietly into the night. Indeed, the leaders of the MSCO appear to be reacting as the Birmingham Police Department probably reacted to criticism of its use of fire hoses againts African American civil rights marchers in the 1960s.
Fernanda Santos of the New York Times reports that Judge Murray Snow, appointed to the court by President George W. Bush, earlier this week strongly rebuked Sheriff Arpaio and one of his chief deputies, "saying that they had defied and even mocked the judge’s order last year to stop singling out Latinos during routine patrols, traffic stops and workplace raids." The article explains why Judge Snow understandably was angry:
"Judge Snow said that Mr. Arpaio and the chief deputy, Jerry Sheridan, had blatantly flouted his order, pointing as evidence to a video of a briefing that the two men held in October for a group of rank-and-file deputies who participated in a crime-suppression operation in southwest Phoenix. In the video, Mr. Sheridan called Judge Snow’s order “ludicrous” and “absurd,” and compared the restrictions the courts had placed on them to those imposed on the beleaguered New Orleans Police Department, whose officers, he said, “were murdering people.” “That tells you how ludicrous this crap is,” Mr. Sheridan of the judge’s order, as a videocamera recorded his every word.
Mr. Arpaio spoke next, telling the deputies, “What the chief deputy said is what I’ve been saying,” adding, “We don’t racially profile, I don’t care what everybody says.”"
Will Sheriff Joe and the MSCO ever learn? When will the leadership of the office appear on its "Mugshots of the Day" feature?